Profits at Emirates rebounded in the 2017 fiscal year,
reversing the previous year's slumping results.
The largest of the Gulf carriers reported a profit of $762
million in the fiscal year that ended March 31, up 124% from the year before.
Emirates' profit margin was 3%, double what it was in 2016, though still
well below the 8.4% margin the carrier reported in 2015.
Emirates Group CEO Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum said the
carrier benefitted from a recovery in the air cargo industry as well as the
strengthening of key currencies against the U.S. dollar.
Still, Al Maktoum said that business conditions were
difficult in 2017 due to worldwide political instability, devaluations in
Africa and "relentless competition."
Emirates previously said that last spring's U.S. ban on
carry-on laptops, as well as the Trump administration's policies related to
travel from the Middle East, hurt its U.S. business.
This spring, Emirates will increase frequency or seat
capacity on three of the five U.S. routes in which it instituted cuts last
After rapid growth for several years, Emirates and fellow
Gulf carriers Etihad and Qatar have had tougher times in the last two years due
to the weakened energy sector, investment blunders in the case of Etihad, and
an intraregional diplomatic dispute that has ended Qatar's ability to fly to
five countries, including Saudi Arabia, Egypt and the United Arab Emirates.