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Emirates delivers another lesson in airnomics in Philippines

One of the biggest ancillary benefits from the rise of Emirates as an airline empire has been to rattle the insularity of airline analysts in Europe, North America and …. Australia.

Today’s lesson is about the Philippines, specifically, about Emirates launching daily flights this October to Clark in central Luzon, in addition to its triple daily services between Dubai and Manila.

An Emirates supplied image of a 777-300ER about to land on new market

If we wish to follow the rise of new large scale economies in the world, in a very different and often more exciting world than one seen with western eyes,  watching where Emirates is directing its massive and growing fleets of A380s and in this case Boeing 777s is perhaps as good and fast a signpost as any.

Subject of course to air treaty realities, the places to watch in our hemisphere range from eastern Siberia (Vladivostok)  and Mongolia in the far north to Vietnam, more of Indonesia and Brunei, and PNG and Fiji closer to home. Not tomorrow, but well within 10 years.

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  • 1
    ltfisher
    Posted February 19, 2013 at 12:03 pm | Permalink

    Isn’t this really about the mass transfer of contract workers to Dubai/Gulf area to work either on construction projects or in the services sector?

  • 2
    patrick kilby
    Posted February 19, 2013 at 12:38 pm | Permalink

    Agree withe IT Fisher the key phrase out of the article is “These routes mostly service the 680,000 OFWs living in the UAE” and merely reflects Philippines airlines cannot expand fast (or smart enough) to move them, and EK will service anyone that wants to fly but the LCCs will soon eat into this market.

  • 3
    Ben Sandilands
    Posted February 19, 2013 at 12:46 pm | Permalink

    To return to the point. What Emirates does tells us what is happening in economic growth in the world we tend not to see, although perhaps younger generations ARE seeing this with more clarity than their elders.

    The growth includes massive short term worker migration between countries, itself an interesting if different parallel to what we see happening in the resources industry within Australia as FIFO generates a growing proportion of flying activity in this country.

    Air travel is no longer the domain of wealthy business and discretionary leisure travellers. It is a facilitator of an entirely new source of air travel activity, which is labour.

  • 4
    Colonel of Truth
    Posted February 19, 2013 at 4:47 pm | Permalink

    “…a facilitator of an entirely new source of air travel activity, which is labour.”
    And has been for years. International short term contract & FIFO in the mining industry are not new.

    Kiwi workers were (and probably are today in greater numbers) FIFO commuting between Aust mine sites and NZ. Some workers I knew a decade ago would FIFO between central Qld mine sites & Singapore when airfares were much higher, so this sort of travel must be ho-hum these days.

    Some 77 crew left my cruise ship in Sydney last week for flights home to The Philippines, Indonesia and China among other places. Smaller numbers; same principle.

    (OT, thanks for ‘Plane Talking’ – it’s always a good read.)

  • 5
    DrStoat
    Posted February 19, 2013 at 4:55 pm | Permalink

    Air traffic treaties are a real problem for Emirates now. The launch to CRK is as much about restricted access to MNL as it is about economics. More flights to Indonesia are also unlikely for Emirates given the restrictions it faces (there are ample unused rights available for Indonesian carriers).

  • 6
    Jono Belth
    Posted February 19, 2013 at 10:22 pm | Permalink

    Some facts:

    The Philippines has a population of close to 100M, with 10% of it living overseas—- so that is 10M flying population! Plus add to that the millions of locals who can now afford to fly for tourism due to now robust economy. Plus the foreign tourists. That is why the Philippine Airlines alone ordered 100 airbuses recently.

    Clark International Airport is Manila’s LCC hub. Clark is only 80km from Manila (like Sydney to Blue mountains ??). Both Manila and Clark are jampacked with flights everyday.

    I flew in and out of Clark many times and the facilities are good. By the way, it is a former US Air Force base.

  • 7
    Mark Skinner
    Posted February 20, 2013 at 10:03 am | Permalink

    I am not sure that Clark is that busy.

    Last year it had 3806 aircraft movements, compared to Manila Airport of 214,354 over the same period.

    Having said that, the Government of the Philippines certainly is spending big money there, and no doubt it will be busy in the coming years.

  • 8
    Mark Skinner
    Posted February 20, 2013 at 10:08 am | Permalink

    Aagh. What I meant to say by that last comment is that since the number of flights compared to NAIA is relatively low, it implies that Emirates is targeting the domestic market (Not those interested in transfers to international destinations).

  • 9
    Jono Belth
    Posted February 20, 2013 at 1:19 pm | Permalink

    Clark is a young airport (commercially) and its achievement to date is outstanding. It benefits from its location sitting in the middle of Clark Freeport and surrounded by major provinces.

    I see this move by Emirates as countering Cebu Pacific’s (Philippine’s 2nd largest airline) maiden long haul flight to Dubai starting October too, on a daily basis.

    Although Cebu Pacific will depart from Manila, Clark and Manila sometimes competes for passengers as they are only 80km apart. Also there are plans to connect the 2 airports by high speed trains.

  • 10
    Jono Belth
    Posted February 20, 2013 at 1:21 pm | Permalink

    Cebu Pacific to fly to Dubai:

    http://www.emirates247.com/news/emirates/dubai-filipinos-rejoice-as-cebu-pacific-arrives-with-cheap-deals-2013-01-21-1.491817

  • 11
    Mark Skinner
    Posted February 20, 2013 at 1:43 pm | Permalink

    Indeed Jono.

    In fact, the Philippines, by having a second airport at that distance from its major airport in Manila (NAIA) is far better off than Australia. We haven’t even started building a second airport with any credible capacity. The Philippine Government has a freeway connecting Clark (DMIA) to Manila, Australia has no coherent plans for a connection. The Philippine Government also has detailed plans for a rail connection to Clark from the city of Manila, Australia has nothing like a credible rail connection even in concept stage.

    Filipinos with Manila and Clark airports can laugh at Sydney’s Airport set up, for good reasons.

  • 12
    Ben Sandilands
    Posted February 20, 2013 at 2:50 pm | Permalink

    Jono Belth,

    ….and not only that, but with more passengers in its A330 than Emirates fits in its 777-300! See second part of this story.

    http://blogs.crikey.com.au/planetalking/2013/01/22/filipino-sharklet-attack-begins-australia-on-menu/

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