Etihad Airways suspends flights to Saudi Arabia over coronavirus

A number of flights were already traveling to Saudi Arabia when the directive was issued. (File/Shutterstock)
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Updated 09 March 2020

Etihad Airways suspends flights to Saudi Arabia over coronavirus

  • One of the flights will be used to repatriate Umrah pilgrims
  • The directive was in agreement with the Saudi authorities

DUBAI: UAE national airline Etihad Airways has temporarily suspended all flights between Abu Dhabi and Saudi Arabia, the company announced Monday in a statement.

Etihad said the suspension was based on a request by the Saudi General Authority for Civil Aviation to prevent the spread of coronavirus.

Earlier on the same day, Saudi authorities announced they were suspending travel for Saudi citizens and foreign residents to the UAE, Kuwait, Bahrain, Lebanon, Syria, Egypt, Iraq, Italy and South Korea.

Etihad Airways operate up to 12 flights per day between Abu Dhabi and the Kingdom. It has already cancelled seven flights on Monday.

Four other flights were en-route to Saudi Arabia when the directive was released.

The planes to Riyadh, Jeddah and Dammam were permitted to land and Saudi nationals were allowed to disembark.

But all other passengers had to remain on the plane and return to Abu Dhabi.

A fourth plane, traveling to Medina, will repatriate Umrah visitors.


Saudi Arabia increases oil exports to 10.6 million bpd

Updated 30 March 2020

Saudi Arabia increases oil exports to 10.6 million bpd

  • The Kingdom intends to increase its crude oil exports starting in May, by about 600,000 barrels per day

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia’s energy ministry said the Kingdom intends to increase its crude oil exports starting in May, by about 600,000 barrels per day.
This will bring the Kingdom’s total petroleum exports to 10.6 million barrels per day, a ministry spokesman said. 
This increase came as a result of displacing crude with natural gas from the Al-Fadhili gas plant, as a fuel for generating electricity and also the decrease in local demand for petroleum products as a result a reduction in transportation due to precautionary measures taken to limit the coronavirus outbreak.