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Emirates To Expand Indian Operations

After bringing to India the double-decker Airbus A-380, the world's largest passenger aircraft, Emirates Airlines plans to expand its operations in the country, which is considered as its second biggest hub after Dubai in the next five years, say reports.

The airline expects robust growth from China, India and Brazil in the near future.

Emirates Senior Vice-President (Commercial Operations West Asia & Indian Ocean) Majid Al Mualla said, "Last year, it was exceptional and everybody suffered. I believe the load from India helped us reduce the effect of the recession. There was double digit growth in India last year and hence India is top of our priority."

As per the bilateral agreements between the two countries, there are a total of 54,000 seats and the current load factor for the airline hovers at around 83 per cent.

With business back to normal after recessions, the $11.8- billion airline expects to grow 15 per cent in the load factor, besides hiring more staff for operations in India.

The airline currently operates 184 weekly flights from 10 destinations in the country and is looking at the possibility of opening new destinations. The bilateral agreement allows it to operate six more additional points, including those at Amristar, Mangalore, Trichy, Goa and Coimbatore.

The airline expects a 15 per cent growth in passenger load during the current fiscal, Mualla said.

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