Dubai’s Emirates Airline ordered 32 additional Airbus A380 superjumbo jetliners, and deliberately announced the $11.5 billion deal in Germany’s capital to fight a trade battle with flag carrier Deutsche Lufthansa AG. Emirates, which had already ordered 58 of the world’s largest passenger plane, wants Berlin to grant it greater access to the huge German aviation market. Carriers from the UAE may now serve at most four German cities.
Emirates, the second largest airline in the world in available seat kilometers; is all set to become one of the largest airlines in the world. Besides the super jumbo recently ordered, Emirates has 48 Airbus 380s, 70 Airbus 350s, 18 Boeing 777-300s and 7 Boeing air freighters on order totaling 143 wide-body aircraft worth more than $48 billion.
The agreement was signed during a ceremony at the Berlin Air Show by His Highness Sheikh Ahmed Bin Saeed Al-Maktoum, Chairman and Chief Executive, Emirates Airline and Group and Tom Enders, Airbus President and CEO which was witnessed by German Chancellor Angela Merkel and other dignitaries.
Emirates is now serving eight international destinations with the super-jumbo aircraft including London Heathrow, Toronto, Paris, Jeddah, Bangkok, Seoul, Sydney and Auckland. The airline will start A380 services to Beijing from 1st August, Manchester from 1st September and will return service to New York’s John F. Kennedy (JFK) airport on 1st October. Emirates’ looks forward to expanding the list of destinations at more than 100 airports around the world as A380s become ready.