AMERICAS: Air Canada CEO slams Emirates plan
The CEO of Air Canada, Calin Rovinescu, has sharply rebuked recent efforts by UAE-based Emirates to expand its services to Canada. Ã¢â‚¬Å“Air Canada and other international airlines such as China Airlines, EVA Air, Korean Airlines and Japan Airlines all depend upon a certain amount of connection traffic beyond their respective hubs to make their pointto- […]
April 1, 2010
Ã¢â‚¬Å“If Emirates pours seats into a market where there is minimal point-to-point demand, it will sop up passengers from these other airlines,Ã¢â‚¬Â Rovinescu argued.
He also went on to deride his rivalÃ¢â‚¬™s recent assertion that more flights to Canada from Dubai will spark CDN$480-million of annual economic activity and 2,800 new jobs, calling the numbers Ã¢â‚¬Å“the stuff of fairy talesÃ¢â‚¬Â and Ã¢â‚¬Å“subterfuge.Ã¢â‚¬Â
Emirates wants to provide twice-daily service to Toronto, up from its current three flights a week, as well as service to Vancouver and Calgary from Dubai.
Rovinescu argued that while more competition looks good for consumers, the long-term result would be Ã¢â‚¬Å“devastatingÃ¢â‚¬Â for the Canadian airline industry.
He warned of fewer jobs, fewer cities served by direct connections to international destinations, and less economic activity.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“While its argument may be seductive, what EmiratesÃ¢â‚¬™ strategy will do is constrain the growth of Canadian airports by turning them from hubs into stubs at the end of a spoke that leads only to EmiratesÃ¢â‚¬™ hub in Dubai,Ã¢â‚¬Â he said.