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Emirates unveils major Indian expansion

Emirates Airline is to add 22 weekly flights to its India network as support for the Indian government’s ambitious growth plan to attract 100 million travellers in 2010.The existing service of 163 flights per week to 10 Indian gateways will be strengthened to 185 over the summer and winter periods. High demand routes - Ahmedabad, Chennai, Kolkata, Kozhikode and Thiruvananthapuram - will be the chief beneficiaries.

Underlying Emirates’ continued investment in India, the airline’s expansion programme closely follows its ‘Journey through India’ campaign which involved a major revamp of the inflight product to meet regional preferences of India’s diverse populace.

Majid Al Mualla, Emirates’ Senior Vice President, Commercial Operations West Asia and Indian Ocean said, “The global slowdown is not over yet, but the outlook for the future is showing signs of improvement. When traditional European markets dried up, India was quick to refocus its trade and marketing efforts in targeting regions not severely affected by the economic downturn such as the Middle East, Eastern Europe, Africa and parts of Southeast Asia.”

Majid Al Mualla added that Emirates is witnessing a surge in the number of Middle East travellers seeking medical tourism options in India.