First minister Salmond welcomes Qatar Airways to Scotland

Qatar Airways chief executive Akbar Al Baker has met with Scottish first minister, Alex Salmond, to discuss the launch of the new services and Scotland’s potential growth prospects.

The meeting precedes the launch of services between Doha and Edinburgh on May 28th.

Al Baker said the airline was pleased to be launching services from the city and that Scotland’s tourism industry, along with infrastructure developments and potential business opportunities were key factors leading the airline’s decision to begin flying there.

“Edinburgh is a key gateway to and from Scotland and an important addition to the Qatar Airways global network.

“I am pleased to have met some of those leaders helping Scotland to further improve its links to the rest of the world as well as grow its infrastructure.

“I would like to thank everyone who has helped Qatar Airways develop its new service, especially Edinburgh Airport who have assisted our team throughout,” said Al Baker.

Qatar Airways also held a press conference at the Balmoral Hotel, to officially announce the forthcoming launch of services from Edinburgh. 

Al Baker announced further details of the new 787 Dreamliner service which is set to significantly reduce journey times from Edinburgh to the airline’s 136 destinations around the world.

Salmond commented: “I am delighted to welcome the new Qatar Airways service between Edinburgh and Doha – the first direct service from Scotland’s capital to the Middle East.

“The Qatar Airways plans for this route are really exciting.

“When it is launched in May, it will result in a significant shortening in flight times to Asia and Australasia, reducing the need for domestic transfers within the UK and making it easier for travellers all over the world to get to Scotland whether on business or pleasure.”