The Dubai government has poured AED 7.3 billion ($ 2 billion) into Emirates after the coronavirus pandemic virtually halted global air travel in March and said it is ready to send additional aid to its flagship airline.
Earlier this year, the state indicated that it is committed to providing financial support to the world's largest long-distance carrier, and a bond prospectus presented by Bloomberg shows the amount of aid provided over the past five months.
“Any further support will depend on airline requirements and will depend on the impact and duration of the current Covid-19 situation,” the document says.
Emirates has been particularly hard hit by the pandemic because its business model is built around the largest aircraft category, the Airbus SE A380 and Boeing Co. 777, which carry passengers between all corners of the globe. The industry expects long-haul transportation to be the slowest recovery from the crisis as passengers avoid long journeys and virus hotspots.
Dubai has joined a list of international governments that have been forced to intervene to save their national airlines, with companies like Deutsche Lufthansa SA receiving billions of dollars to weather the crisis. While many borders have reopened as the initial surge in infections subsided, the pace of recovery has slowed due to subsequent travel restrictions to contain new outbreaks.
Emirates resumed some scheduled passenger flights on May 21 after suspending most flights for almost two months. The airline plans to expand its network to 80 destinations in September, COO Adel Al Redha said in an interview earlier this month, and will serve all destinations by 2021.
Emirates has begun the process of laying off thousands of employees to preserve cash amid the ongoing downturn and is looking at other ways to streamline operations. The airline is also in talks with Boeing for a preferred mix of new wide-body aircraft, with a focus on smaller aircraft.