H.H. Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman and Chief Executive, Emirates airline and Group has made the following statement on the 30th Anniversary of the Emirates airline.
Today we celebrate the 30th anniversary of Emirates airline. From humble beginnings, Emirates, in tandem with Dubai and the UAE, has grown to become a leading player on the global stage.
Without the daring vision and support of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, whose brainchild it was for Dubai to set up its own airline back in 1985, none of this would have come to pass. From day one, Sheikh Mohammed's expectation for Dubai’s aviation industry has been clear, driving us – the airline, the airport, and the entire ecosystem – to be world-class and number one globally.
As we look back on Emirates' and Dubai's achievements in the aviation sector, we know these are just milestones on a journey and we have a long way more to go. Our successes to date only motivate us strive for more.
The countdown for Expo 2020 has begun, where Dubai expects to welcome 20 million visitors and generate Dh 300 billion from tourism activities. Emirates will play a vital role to reach this goal. Today Emirates connects Dubai to more than 140 cities in 6 continents. With each new flight we add to our global network, we exponentially increase connectivity options between cities, and flight choices for our customers. We have 267 aircraft in order worth US$ 128 billion. These new aircraft are not only for fleet expansion, but are also replacing our older aircraft so that Emirates will always provide the best possible flying experience. By 2020, we expect to fly 70 million passengers on our fleet of 300 aircraft. To ensure we stay ahead of the game, we will also continue to invest in new technologies, in developing our products and services, and in nurturing our talent pool.
I would like to express my deepest gratitude to His Highness Sheikh Mohammed for his continuous support to Emirates and to the UAE's aviation industry. I would also like to take this opportunity to commend the dedicated men and women working at Emirates airline. From over 160 countries, they have come to join us and in building a global airline to provide travellers and customers around the world with the best possible experience, and it is their passion and hard work that will enable us to grow our leadership in the aviation industry."