Etihad says protectionism could damage biz


Honey Ryder
Feb 26, 2004
Total Time

Etihad Airways, facing U.S. and European claims that it benefited from unfair subsidies, said the accusations amount to protectionism that threatens its business.
Efforts by the three biggest U.S. carriers and European counterparts to restrict Etihad?s expansion are a major concern for the company and could stem the growth of its network, Chief Executive Officer James Hogan said Thursday in a statement.
?We are currently faced with unprecedented external challenges,? Hogan said as Etihad announced a 52 percent jump in annual earnings. ?Of particular concern has been the rise in aggressive protectionist sentiment in Europe and the U.S., where both Etihad and its partner airlines are being targeted.?
American Airlines Group Inc., Delta Air Lines Inc. and United Continental Holdings Inc. said in a report to the Obama administration that Etihad has received $17 billion in subsidies since 2004, including interest-free loans, equity infusions and fee exemptions, prompting the government to begin an investigation. In Europe, Etihad has faced scrutiny over its minority investments in local carriers, while the Netherlands has said it will deny additional access over the aid claims.
?Despite these hurdles, Abu Dhabi-based Etihad will continue to grow as planned in 2015,? Hogan said, adding that its expansion proceeded ?strictly to plan? last year.
Profit Surge
Net income at Etihad reached $73 million in 2014 as the passenger tally increased by 22 percent to 14.8 million, revenue rose almost 27 percent to $7.6 billion and the company?s stakes in other airlines drove transfer traffic.
Etihad is vying with Gulf rivals Qatar Airways and Emirates of Dubai in seeking to funnel inter-continental passengers via its hub, a strategy that?s at the heart of the attacks from Western competitors. Hogan has in turn said U.S. carriers have had $64.9 billion in bankruptcy and pension aid.
Etihad added 10 new destinations in eight countries last year, including Los Angeles, Dallas and San Francisco -- routes that prompted accusations from U.S. airlines that the Gulf carriers are rushing to add capacity before a possible suspension of a bilateral treaty in the spat about subsidies.
The company, No. 3 in the Gulf behind Emirates and Qatar Air, introduced its first Airbus Group NV A380 and first Boeing Co. 787-9 last year, and will take delivery of 16 planes this year, including four 787s and four A380s.
Etihad has joint plane-purchasing arrangements with its equity partners and will development that relationship further through a global funding platform with Alitalia SpA, Air Berlin Plc, Air Serbia, Air Seychelles Ltd. and Jet Airways India Ltd.

General Lee

Well-known member
Aug 24, 2002
Total Time
A lot
If this doesn't prove the US3 carriers point about competing against a Government instead of an airline, I don't know what does: funny stuff

If you want Qatar state contracts, give us flight slots, says airline CEO

Thomas Escritt
Tue, 26 May '15 | 10:20 AM ET

AMSTERDAM, May 26 (Reuters) - In handing out lucrative public procurement contracts, Qatar is likely to favor countries whose airports grant take-off and landing slots to state-owned Qatar Airways, its chief executive said on Tuesday.

The remarks by Akbar al-Baker, in Amsterdam to launch a new six-times-a-week route, may fan the protests of western carriers that Gulf competitors have unfair advantages because of their close relationships to their governments.
He said the Qatari government would undoubtedly take note if the airline, one of a trio of Gulf carriers that have shifted the industry's center of gravity eastward, were not awarded the extra slot it is seeking in order to fly seven days a week to and from Amsterdam Schiphol.

"If you do not allow us to benefit in a small way by bringing flights, you should not expect commercial contracts from the government," he said.

Earlier this month, the Dutch government said it would temporarily stop granting new slots at Schiphol to Gulf airlines, promising a tougher line against possible "unfair competition" from the Middle East.

That stance, if maintained, would prevent Qatar Airways from getting the extra day it wants.

"My government will definitely not be happy... (Royal Dutch) Shell is one of the biggest single investors in the country and there are some $150 billion in infrastructure projects coming up in the next years," Baker said.

While he later stressed that he had no direct influence over public procurement decisions, he said Qatar offered rich pickings for western companies in the run-up to its hosting of the 2022 soccer World Cup.

And did you see the USAToday article about the deplorable conditions for foreign workers in Doha building the infrastructure for the upcoming World Cup in Doha? Ridiculous. Then the FIFA scandals, and 124 degree heat yesterday as shown on ABC News who helped break the FIFA story.

Bye Bye---General Lee

Golden Falcon

Well-known member
Feb 8, 2006
Total Time
if everyone stands together, then nobody will be here do do their work, as they sure as hell can't do anything for themselves...