The Strategist

Emirates President expects air traffic to normalize by summer 2021

06/02/2020 - 06:14

Tim Clark, President of Emirates Airlines, expects that flights will return to normal by the summer of 2021 if the COVID-19 vaccine will be available the first quarter of 2021.

Julian Herzog
Julian Herzog
"Until the story of this virus lasts too long, we will continue to live and see that everything will return to normal in June 2021. If we get the vaccine by the 1st quarter of 2021, we have a chance to fight, and my bet is that from the summer of next year there will be a significant increase for medium and long-haul airlines, but the next six to nine months will be difficult for the aviation industry," he said during a webinar organized by the Arabian Travel Market.

At the same time, the head of one of the world's leading air carriers believes that airlines will need about 3-4 years to restore their network of flights at the same level as before the outbreak of COVID-19.

"I think that probably by the years 2022–23 or 2023–24 we will see that things will return to a certain degree of normality, and Emirates will operate their network as it was, and hopefully as well,” he added.

According to him, the upcoming period will be difficult for the airline industry, including due to a reduction in salaries and vacations, which in the short term will lead to a decrease in demand for flights.

At the same time, Clark expressed the hope that tourists will return to Dubai next month.

The economic capital of the UAE, Dubai, which lives largely on income from tourists, from the end of March began to return to business activity, parks and public beaches reopened.

According to the UAE Ministry of Health on Monday, the total number of the novel coronavirus cases in the UAE since the beginning of the pandemic has exceeded 35 thousand, while more than 18 thousand have recovered. 266 people died.