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Mon 7 Mar 2016 09:42 AM

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Qatar Airways’ new Sydney service to boost NSW economy by $178m, says Al Baker

Doha-based airline now operates daily service to Doha from Sydney and plans to add Adelaide and Brisbane flights by end of year

Qatar Airways’ new Sydney service to boost NSW economy by $178m, says Al Baker
Qatar Airways Group chief executive, Akbar Al Baker (centre left), alongside Sydney Airport managing director and CEO Kerrie Mather (left); Qatar Airways SVP South East Asia and South West Pacific, Marwan Koleilat (centre right) and Qatar Airways Country Manager Australasia, Adam Radwanski (right). Photo: QA

Qatar Airways’ CEO Baker Al Baker has said the airline’s new daily service into Sydney will boost the New South Wales economy by up $178 million and generate up to 3,000 jobs.

Speaking at a media briefing, where the airline was promoting its new direct service to Sydney, Al Baker said the new service will also help bolster trade between Australia and Qatar.

“Qatar Airways’ new daily service will boost tourism, providing an additional 245,000 seats per year, generating an estimated 3,000 jobs and contributing more than AUD$240 million ($178m) to the Australian economy," he said.

“It will also foster trade, providing greater air cargo capacity and access to the Middle East. Australian exports to Doha grew by 23 per cent last year, and the State of Qatar’s high demand for livestock, cereal, meat, dairy products and crops provides a significant opportunity for Australian exporters.”

Al Baker told media that Qatar Airways has always been a trailblazer in the airline industry that was always a “step ahead” of the competition.

“When Qatar did away with First Class, we were ridiculed,” Mr Al Baker said. “But just one year later we decided to have two classes, there was the Global Financial Crisis and all major companies banned their executives from travelling in First Class.”

Qatar Airways will operate a Boeing 777 on the Doha-Sydney service, which has been delayed due to problems operating around the strict night curfew at Sydney International. He told ABC News that he has no plans to use the planned second Sydney airport, which is not restricted by curfews but also doesn't have high-speed public transport links to the city.

"As far as I'm concerned, I need to come in and out of an airport which is convenient to the general public," he told ABC.

"We want to make sure that the passengers that use the airport are not inconvenienced and all the amenities required by the passenger is available and I think that the [current] Sydney airport fits into that requirement."

Qatar already flies into Melbourne and Perth, and will launch a Doha-Adelaide service in May using the airline’s A350-900 aircraft, which will double the airline's capacity to and from Australia in the first half of 2016. Brisbane and a second daily to Sydney, traffic rights permitting, are expected to follow later this year, according to reports in aviation media.

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Elizabeth watson 4 years ago

Qatar Airways offer exceptional service and its always a pleasure to fly with them: they make you feel like royalty and this wonderful airline re-defines the meaning of 'service'.
Their CEO, Mr Al Baker, has an impeccable record for providing standards of excellence, and his ability to take care of even the smallest important details and his vision for putting clients first, is unsurpassed.