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Tue 17 Nov 2009 11:48 AM

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Emirates chief expects revenues to rise slightly

UPDATE 1: Dubai airline's president sees revenues matching or just ahead of last year.

Emirates, the Arab world's biggest airline, expects revenue from the 2009-2010 fiscal year to match or be slightly ahead of the previous year, company president Tim Clark said on Tuesday.

"We will prob match or go slightly ahead," he said during an interview on Reuters Television, when asked about revenue expectations for the current fiscal year.

On Monday, the chairman of Emirates said he was discussing new aircraft orders with Boeing and Airbus which could number "10s of planes".

The Arab world's largest airline already has orders worth $55 billion with the two manufacturers.

"We are in discussions ... there won't be anything at the air show (but) we are talking to Boeing and Airbus," Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al-Maktoum said at the Dubai Air Show. "It would be in the 10s of planes ... I think we can say 777s (from Boeing) and could be A330s on the Airbus side."

He said any decision would depend "on how fast we can conclude the terms that we want".

Last week, Emirates said it might take over orders its rivals are looking to delay as it prepares for the global recovery.

Meanwhile Emirates airline chairman said on Tuesday that he expects no difficulties in securing financing for planes bought and scheduled for delivery during this year and next.

Sheikh Ahmed Bin Saeed Al Maktoum told Al Arabiya TV that the airline had good reserves and an "excellent" liquidity position.

The airline plans no lay-offs but is encouraging more than 650 staff to take unpaid holidays of up to three months to cope with the impact of the global financial downturn, he said. (Reuters)

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