Dubai – Mubasher: Emirates airline President Tim Clark believes aircraft fuel is “hugely overpriced”, noting that it should be at around $52 per barrel (pb).
"I am one of these people that says it is hugely overpriced. If you are at $77 or $83 (per barrel) it should be at $52. That's where it needs to be," Clark told CNBC in an interview on the sidelines of The Aviation Festival in London.
Since the start of 2018, oil prices have grown by 20%, with Brent futures reaching $76.48 pb early Friday, while US crude (Nymex) was at $67.76 pb. Brent ended the week 0.43% higher at $76.83 pb, while Nymex slipped 0.03% to $67.75 pb.
“The forward curve is flat. There’s a certain amount of flakiness going forward that fuel will rise above where it is today. That’s my view,” he added.
Emirates alongside other Gulf airlines has been struggling over the past few years, with long-term oil price forecasts weighing down considerably on their growth.
Moreover, fuel prices at the UAE-based airline are currently seen as 44% higher than they were in the same period of 2017, according to the airline’s top official.
"Those people, those countries, those entities that say they can't make money on $52, they need to be doing something else," Clark stated.
On a side note, the International Air Transport Association (IATA) ranked Emirates as the fourth biggest airline based on total scheduled passenger kilometres flown in 2017.
Emirates logged 289 million passenger kilometres last year, whereas coming in first place was American Airlines with 324 million passenger kilometres. Delta Air Lines and United Airlines came in second and third with 316.3 million passenger kilometres and 311 million passenger kilometres, respectively.