Emirates Airline has been granted rights to operate additional flights into Australia, after the successful negotiations between the governments of Australia and the United Arab Emirates.

Emirates will gradually increase its frequency to the four cities it currently serves ’ Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Perth ’ and the new agreement will allow Emirates to grow its services from 49 flights a week to 84 flights a week between now and 2011. This will mark an increase of 71% in its services to Australia.

Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman and Chief Executive, Emirates Airline & Group, said: ‘We thank the Australian Government, airport authorities and the other key stakeholders for their support of our long-term commitment to Australia. Emirates would also like to thank the UAE government for their efforts to conclude these negotiations successfully. While we are yet to finalize our roll-out plan and schedules, our additional flights will boost tourism, trade and business between Australia and the Middle East, and will provide Australian exporters an extensive network of markets globally.’

With its hub in Dubai, Emirates is in a unique position to connect passengers and cargo east and west as well as north and south of the equator. Australia is an important tourism and trade market for its customers worldwide and Emirates has been actively growing its services to the country since the launch of its operations to Australia in 1996.

Emirates currently serves Australia with double dailies to Sydney, Melbourne and Perth and a daily flight to Brisbane. Emirates is a key player in Australia’s multi-billion dollar trade relationship with the United Arab Emirates and the Middle East region.

Emirates has invested over A$1 billion in Australia in the last decade.