Emirates chief describes Indian seats deal as 'biggest single problem'

Emirates president Tim Clark says he expects discussions to restart between the Indian and Dubai gov'ts on bilateral air traffic rights
Emirates chief describes Indian seats deal as 'biggest single problem'
Emirates launched flights to Delhi and Mumbai from Dubai in 1985 and now flies to nine Indian destinations with more than 170 weekly flights.
By Staff writer
Mon 03 Jun 2019 10:51 AM

Emirates is looking for more seats to offer on the Dubai-India route, its chairman Tim Clark was quoted as saying on Monday, describing its allocation as its "biggest single problem".

He said in comments published by business wire Livemint that he expects discussions to restart between the Indian and Dubai governments on the agreement which has not seen an increase in bilateral rights for the last five years.

"The bilateral (air traffic) rights between India and Dubai is the biggest single problem. Now, the elections are over and the Modi government is back in power. I am hoping that the talks would (between India and Dubai) reopen," he was quoted as saying.

The existing bilateral rights allows carriers from Dubai and India to offer nearly 130,000 seats per week on their flights to each other's territory.

"The biggest beneficiaries of the increased capacity (foreign flying rights) have been the Indian carriers. Now, what is stopping them from saying that India could have some more. I don't know. It does not make any sense to me. Lot of things do not make sense there and that is where we are," Clark said.

Emirates launched flights to Delhi and Mumbai from Dubai in 1985 and now flies to nine Indian destinations with more than 170 weekly flights.

Speaking on the sidelines of a conference organised by International Air Transport Association, Clark said he hoped the Indian government would be able to focus more on the aviation sector following the election.

In April, Emirates and SpiceJet inked a preliminary pact for a reciprocal code share agreement.

Subject to government approvals, the partnership would enable Emirates' passengers to enjoy seamless connectivity on flights to India, leveraging SpiceJet’s domestic presence.

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