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Dubai-based airline Emirates cuts jobs again

Emirates has resumed regular passenger flights, but the carrier had to reduce the size of its workforce concurrent with its reduced operations, a spokesperson said.
An Emirates passenger plane comes in to land at London Heathrow airport, following the outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), London, Britain, May 21, 2020. REUTERS/Toby Melville - RC2ZSG9E0EA0

The Dubai-based airline Emirates let go of more employees on Wednesday. The airline has laid off hundreds of pilots and cabin crew since yesterday, according to Reuters. A spokesperson for Emirates confirmed the redundancies, calling them a “difficult decision” resulting from the crisis in global travel due to the coronavirus pandemic.

“Given the significant impact that the pandemic has had on our business, we simply cannot sustain excess resources and have to right size our workforce in line with our reduced operations,” the spokesperson said in a statement sent to Al-Monitor. “We deeply regret that we have to let some of our people go.”

Emirates, one of the biggest airlines in the world, has experienced revenue losses and subsequent job cuts like other carriers in the Middle East during the pandemic. Late last month, the airline let go of trainee pilots and flight attendants.

Emirates and fellow United Arab Emirates airline Etihad Airways stopped almost all of their flights in March amid the novel coronavirus crisis and accompanying downturn in global travel.

The carrier is showing signs of recovery, however. Emirates has now resumed regular passenger flights to more than 20 destinations in North America, Europe, Asia and Australia, the airline said. Next, it will add flights to Afghanistan.

Emirates’ hub Dubai is allowing greater movement at present than compared to the 24-hour lockdown in April aimed at curbing the spread of the virus that causes COVID-19. Public parks and hotel beaches reopened last month and the city is currently working on reopening mosques.

The local authorities remain concerned about the virus, however. Dubai police are now using surveillance cameras to detect possible carriers of the virus.