Emirates will receive financial aid from the Dubai government to help the world’s largest long-haul airline weather the international collapse in air travel demand.
Dubai’s government will inject equity into the company because of its importance to the economy and the airline’s role in positioning the emirate as a major international aviation hub, according to a statement from state media agency WAM.
"Dubai is fully committed to supporting Emirates airlines in the current critical period," said Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of The Executive Council of Dubai.
He did not say how much equity would be injected into Emirates but added that further details will be announced “at a later stage”.
The announcement comes after a two-week flight suspension was brought in by the UAE in an effort to control the spread of Covid-19.
Today, we renew our commitment to support a success story that started in the mid-1980s to reach its goal of sitting on the throne of global aviation. The Government of Dubai is committed to fully supporting @Emirates at this critical time & will inject equity into the company. pic.twitter.com/3cabmUDOVD— Hamdan bin Mohammed (@HamdanMohammed) March 31, 2020
Airlines the Middle East have been slammed by the Covid-19 outbreak with carriers already thought to have lost out on $7 billion of revenues this year.
The International Air Transport Association (IATA) estimates that airlines in the region could lose out on as much as $19 billion in 2020 as a result of the coronavirus.
Airlines including Emirates have had to take cost cutting measures in the face of evaporating sales.
The group has temporarily reduced staff pay by 25% to 50% in an effort to preserve liquidity.Emirates plays a crucial role in making the UAE the major gateway between Europe and Asia and its home, Dubai International Airport, has been the world’s busiest hub for six years running.