Emirates posts £3.89bn net loss as coronavirus disrupts travel
The Middle East’s largest airline, Emirates has announced a net loss of 5.5 billion dollars (£3.89 billion) over the past year as revenue fell by more than 66% due to global travel restrictions sparked by the coronavirus pandemic.
The Dubai-based airline said revenue had declined by 8.4 billion dollars (£5.9 billion), largely due to the suspension of passenger flights at its hub in March 2020 and ongoing restrictions on travel.
The airline said its total passenger and cargo capacity had declined by 58% over the past year.
Last year, Emirates squeezed out profits of 288 million dollars (£204 million).
Emirates Group, which also operates dnata travel and ground services at airports, reported a total loss of six billion dollars (£4.25 billion), the first time it has not posted a profit in more than three decades, the company said.
The long-haul carrier, which is owned by the Dubai government, was thrown a two billion dollar (£1.4 billion) lifeline from Dubai’s government to stave off a liquidity crunch last year – a clear indication of how dire the situation had become for one of the world’s leading airlines.
The airline was forced to ground all passenger flights in March 2020 for several weeks amid a temporary closure of airports in the United Arab Emirates, including transit flights through Dubai – the hub for Emirates and the world’s busiest airport for international travel.