Qatar Air boss 'hopeful about travel ban'

Qatar Air boss 'hopeful about travel ban'

The US travel ban won’t stop travellers from the center East flying to america, Qatar Airways’ leader has said.

“Whatever President Trump says, people would want to travel still,” said Akbar Al Baker.

The US travel ban targets folks from Iran, Libya, Somalia and Yemen.

But Mr Al Baker said there have been many in your community with connections to the united states who would continue steadily to go to the country.

“And how will the tourists go? They don’t pass swimming over the Atlantic. They must fly.”

However, the airline chief said he didn’t think that Mr Trump wanted “to close the doors on america”.

“THEREFORE I am still positive that the traffic flow in and out of America will continue.”

Economic blockade

Qatar Airways says it’ll post a loss this season as a result of year-long economic blockade of Qatar by four of its neighbours.

Amid allegations that Qatar was supporting terrorism and that it had been too closely associated with Iran, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, june the United Arab Emirates and Egypt imposed the blockade last.

The carrier lost a lot of its local routes and contains had to carve out new links – and steer clear of Yemeni airspace that is effectively controlled by Saudi Araba.

Mr Al Baker warned he didn’t think the blockade would end soon: “I don’t believe it will get better. On the other hand, they are attempting to make things difficult.”

Talking to reporters at the Farnborough Airshow, he said: “They’re attempting to intimidate suppliers, manufacturers and banks never to work with my country.”

Mr Al Baker said the carrier was spending so much time adjust fully to the blockade but that trading conditions remained challenging.

“Any new routes that people have launched to displace those we’ve lost remember to mature.

“Remember we have been going on with this expansion, in order that might put pressure on our important thing also.”

Delivery delays

As for the existing backlog of orders at major aircraft manufacturers, Mr Al Baker said not had been done to handle the issue enough.

As a complete result many airlines face long waits before taking delivery of new aircraft, he said.

“They will have the ability to deliver nonetheless it is their supply chain that’s holding them back,” he said.

Mr Al Baker made headlines in June when he said his airline needed to be led by way of a man “since it is really a very challenging position”.

He later offered “heartfelt apologies for just about any offence caused” and said his firm was fully focused on gender equality.

Follow Tim Bowler on Twitter@timbowlerbbc