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Emirates airline’s growth will slow until the end of the decade as the Dubai government invests billions of dollars in further developing the emirate as a global aviation hub.
Of the 139 Airbus A380 superjumbos that have been delivered over the past eight years, 52 are flying with Dubai’s Emirates Airlines — with dozens more on order. That’s why when Emirates demands a redesigned version of the superjumbo with more efficient engines, Airbus listens.
The real estate sector is expected to emerge as one of the principal beneficiaries of the development of Al Maktoum International Airport, according to international real estate consultants Cluttons.
So Dubai has the new Al Maktoum International Airport, already partly open. On completion it will be the world’s largest passenger and cargo hub. Up to four aircraft will be able to land simultaneously, 24 hours a day, on parallel runways.
The most recent figures compiled by Airports Council International, covering the past 12 months through March 2014, show that Dubai — at least for now — has Heathrow beat for the crown of most international passenger traffic. It ended 2013 in second place behind the European hub.
“The contract which we signed in 2007 for 70 A350 aircraft has lapsed. We are reviewing our fleet requirements,” an Emirates spokesperson confirmed to Khaleej Times on Wednesday.
In the Middle East region, estimated $100 billion investments are planned for airports expansion and new developments, including $40 billion in the GCC. According to IATA, the Middle East is expected to have the third fastest growth rate at 6.6 per cent until 2016, making it the second-fastest growing aviation market.
Fourteen airlines have reserved slots for flights at Al Maktoum International at Dubai World Central (DWC) while major runway upgrade work is carried out at Dubai International Airport.