Three government-subsidized airlines from two Middle East nations are rapidly expanding their global networks at the detriment of all other airlines. Emirates, Etihad, and Qatar Airways, are enjoying significant financial support from their government owners that is not available to their privately-owned competitors. This unchecked expansion and massive subsidization has caused European airlines to terminate non-stop service from their respective hubs to cities across Africa and Asia. Terminated routes by European airlines mean fewer competitive travel options for consumers and a loss of European jobs.
Market share between Europe, the Gulf, India, and South-East Asia, continues to increase for Emirates, Etihad, and Qatar Airways, having gone from 22% in 2008 to 34% in 2014. Meanwhile, market share for European airlines has decreased from 23% to 16% in the same time period.
Government subsidies have allowed Emirates, Etihad, and Qatar Airways, to capture the Europe-to-Africa/Asia traffic flows that were once flown non-stop by European airlines from their respective hubs. Many of these destinations were terminated because of unfair trade practices and government subsides by the UAE and Qatar.
The following is a partial list of terminated destinations by European airlines.
These cities are currently all served via Abu Dhabi, Doha, or Dubai, by a state-subsidized Middle East airline:
Learn more about the subsidized Gulf carriers:
Emirates, the national airline of Dubai, has collected subsidies from their government since 2004. Learn the different ways they have collected subsidies from the United Arab Emirates.
Etihad Airways is the state-owned airline of Abu Dhabi. Take a guess, how much do you think they have received in subsidized support from their government?
Qatar Airways never had to depend on profits to keep their airline in business. When funds are running low, they can depend on a check from their government. Who else is going to buy all of those A350s?