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Emirates announces plans for 2009

New routes announced

February 23, 2009

Emirates has unveiled plans for expansion in 2009, including a 14% increase in the number of flights across its entire network.

The plans also detail the company's aim to boost its fleet with 18 new passenger aircraft, with four Airbus A380s expected by the end of 2009, followed by a further seven in the 2009-2010 financial year.

"The next year is not going to be an easy ride for the airline industry," said Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al-Maktoum, chairman and chief executive of the carrier. "Emirates has prepared the best we can for the challenges we foresee, but we also see it as a time of opportunity. 2009, with our significant capacity increase, will be a year of consolidation for us, with fewer new routes launched than in previous years.

"Instead, we will concentrate on strengthening our presence on routes where there is a greater demand from our customers. All of our new capacity will be deployed in markets where we see growth potential, particularly Africa and the Middle East."

Major route developments will include services from Dubai to Durban in South Africa, effective from October 1, 2009. Plans are also underway to deploy superjumbos on the Dubai to Seoul and Dubai to Singapore services towards the end of the calendar year.

In total, the additional capacity will seem more than 8,635 seats and approximately 600 tonnes of cargo capacity added to the Emirates fleet.

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