In-depth: Qatar Airways global expansion despite blockade

Weekend Special | December 22, 2019
Since 2017, a Saudi Arabia-led blockade has had its fair share of negative impact on Qatar Airways’ operations. While the airline’s latest report includes a statement by its Chief Executive Officer Akbar Al Baker claiming that the Doha-based carrier’s “adversaries have suffered far more than” Qatar Airways did, a $639 million (QAR2.3 billion) loss in FY2019 might point otherwise. A $1.3 billion increase in fuel expenses compared to FY2018, in part due to the blockade, forced the flag carrier to navigate some tough waters and airspace, quite literally, as neighboring countries are not too keen on letting Qatar-registered aircraft bypass their airspace.
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