Qantas has scorned Emirates claims
that it competes on similar commercial terms with other airlines, as the Middle
East airline seeks to strengthen its connections with Australia.
In an attack echoing that from Air France
last year, Qantas chairman Margaret Jackson dismisses as “fiction” any
suggestion that the two carriers are operating on the same commercial basis.
Emirates, which is looking to double its
access to Australian markets to 84 weekly flights, has repeatedly denied that
it receives any form of subsidy from the Government of its home state.
says that the Dubai Government’s ownership of Emirates allows the airline to
enjoy a sovereign risk rating and support far greater debt levels than those
which could be sustained by carriers such as Qantas.
Emirates benefits from corporate tax
exemptions in Dubai
but Jackson also
highlights the close managerial links between Dubai’s
Government, the emirate’s civil aviation administration, and Dubai
“Life must be wonderfully simple
when the airline, Government and airport interests are all controlled and run
by the same people,” she says.
“No-one doubts that Emirates is a
first-class airline. At the same time no-one can be in any doubt that Emirates’
remarkable growth reflects the aggressive and co-ordinated strategies of its
owners, the Government of Dubai, to build a world-class hub to grow tourism and
“This is a fact that all
commercially-run airlines accept. It is time that Emirates acknowledges that it
enjoys significant advantages that help set it apart from the field.”
Emirates has previously rejected
similar accusations of unfair support from Air France, stating last year that
the carrier had not benefited from aero-political protection and had not
received financial input from the Government since its founding.