Emirates airline chief says first-half performance better than last year

Emirates airline President Tim Clark said demand had fallen by around 15 percent to 18 percent on US flights. (Reuters)
Updated 08 October 2017

Emirates airline chief says first-half performance better than last year

DUBAI: Emirates, the Middle East’s largest airline, has had a better first half in the current financial year than the same period a year ago when it reported a 75 percent decline in profits.
“The six months were a lot better than this time last year,” Emirates airline President Tim Clark told reporters at an aviation security conference in Dubai.
The state-owned, Dubai-based carrier is expected to report its results next month for the six months ended September 30.
Results a year ago were affected by a strong dollar and tougher competition as it filled a lower percentage of seats on a year-on-year basis.
This year, Emirates has had to contend with travel restrictions imposed by the US which mostly impacted carriers in the Middle East, though have since largely been lifted.
The airline cut frequencies on some US flights in a response to those restrictions weakening passenger demand.
Clark said demand had fallen by around 15 percent to 18 percent on US flights, though the airline had just had “a very robust summer” there.


Turkey on brink of recession as economy collapses

Updated 13 August 2020

Turkey on brink of recession as economy collapses

  • Consumer debt has increased by 25 percent to more than $100 billion in the past three months

JEDDAH: President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s popularity is plunging in lockstep with Turkey’s collapsing economy and the country is on the verge of a potentially devastating recession, financial experts have told Arab News.
The value of the Turkish lira has fallen to 7.30 against the US dollar and the central bank has spent $65 billion to prop up the currency, according to the US investment bank Goldman Sachs.
Consumer debt has increased by 25 percent to more than $100 billion in the past three months as the government moved to help families during the coronavirus pandemic, but the result has been a surge in inflation to 12 percent.
With the falling lira and increased price of imported goods, the living standards of many Turks who earn in lira but have dollar debts have fallen sharply.
The economy is expected to shrink by about 4 percent this year. The official unemployment rate remains at 12.8 percent because layoffs are banned, although many experts say the real figures are far higher.
To complete the perfect storm, tourism revenues and exports have been decimated by the pandemic, and foreign capital has fled amid fears over economic trends and the independence of the central bank.
Wolfango Piccoli, of Teneo Intelligence in London, said logic dictated an increase in interest rates but “this is unlikely to happen.”
Piccoli said central bank officials would strive to avoid an outright rate hike at their monetary policy meeting on Aug. 20. “A mix of controlled devaluation and backdoor policies, such as limiting Turkish lira’s liquidity, remains their preferred approach,” he said.
There is speculation of snap elections, and Erdogan’s view is that higher interest rates cause inflation, despite considerable economic evidence to the contrary.