Dhaka: Two of the biggest airlines of Middle East are warning that 85 per cent of airlines globally may face bankruptcy by the end of this year if governments do not provide financial support.
Passenger demand will not return to pre-crisis level until 2023, said Tim Clark, President of Emirates and Tony Douglas, Chief Executive Officer of Etihad Airways in a joint statement issued by the US-UAE Business Council.
The coronavirus has wiped out air travel demand across the world, including the neighbouring hubs of Dubai and Abu Dhabi that serve as homes for Emirates, the industry’s largest long-haul carrier, and Etihad respectively.
Lasting restrictions such as two-week quarantines, testing and social distancing will impact demand and operations, they said, adding that the way passengers fly will be different until an effective vaccine becomes widely available.
Last month, Dubai based Emirates received assurances for government support.
Airlines have been hit with an unprecedented near-total shutdown of travel as the health emergency sweeps across continents and governments close borders and order populations to stay at home.
According to the International Air Transport Association, about 70 per cent of global carrier capacity is idled and the industry stands to lose USD 314 billion in 2020 in ticket sales.