Qatar Airways profits climb

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DOHA, 12 July 2017: Qatar Airways said Sunday its net profits rose by almost 22% in the last financial year that ended in March, before the diplomatic fallout with its Gulf neighbours.

The results cover the period from 1 April, 2016 to 31 March, 2017, well before Saudi Arabia and several of its allies cut ties with Qatar and severed air links with Doha nearly a week ago.

“Our annual results once again reflect the success of our expansion and growth strategy,” Qatar Airways chief executive Akbar Al-Baker said in a statement.

Net profits rose to USD540 million (482 million euros), a 21.7% increase.

Revenues rose by 10% to USD10.6 billion.

Despite this performance, the current period is an uncertain time for the Doha-based carrier.

Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and others accuse Qatar of supporting terrorism and have imposed punitive measures on Doha.

These include banning Qatar Airways from using their airspace, and Saudi Arabia also revoked Qatar Airways’ licence to operate out of the kingdom.

The airline has also been dealing with the repercussions of a ban imposed by the United States in March on electronic devices larger than a smart phone on flights from the Middle East.

© Agence France-Presse