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Qatar Airways Pilots Hold Joint Annual Meeting

Doha, QATAR – Pilots from across Qatar Airways’ operational fleet gathered at the Four Seasons Hotel in Doha for their joint annual meeting at which the airline’s Chief Executive Officer Akbar Al Baker was the guest of honour.

Al Baker praised the pilots for being airline ambassadors and expressed delight at their pivotal role at a time when Qatar Airways was growing at a phenomenal rate.

Qatar Airways currently employs 664 pilots with a further 80 new recruits undergoing training. The cockpit crew are drawn from more than 80 nationalities, including home-grown talent with a complement of 67 Qatari pilots.

Pilots were briefed by Qatar Airways General Manager Flight Operations Captain Abdulla Ali Johar on the airline’s fleet development. The airline’s complement of 47 all-Airbus aircraft will increase to 54 by the end of 2007.

He said that the fleet will include three of the new long-haul Airbus A340-600 aircraft which Qatar Airways is due to take delivery of during a four-month period starting in July.

The cargo fleet will be significantly increased from the current solitary Airbus A300 to three by the end of next year with the conversion into freighters of two of Qatar Airways’ existing A300 passenger aircraft.

The meeting also heard an update on the expansion taking place at Doha International Airport. The technical building, where pilots and cabin crew hold their pre-flight briefings, is being expanded to provide more meeting space.

Qatar Airways is one of the fastest growing airlines operating one of the youngest fleets in the world to 70 destinations in Europe, Middle East, Africa, Indian subcontinent and Far East. Based in Doha, capital of the State of Qatar, the airline is one of only four airlines to be ranked Five Star by Skytrax – the independent aviation industry monitoring agency – for service and excellence.

Doha-based Qatar Airways will operate a fleet of 110 aircraft by 2013 – almost double the existing size. Qatar Airways has ordered 80 Airbus A350s, 60 Boeing 787s and 32 Boeing 777s, with deliveries of the latter having started in November 2007. The airline is a launch customer of the twin-deck Airbus A380 ‘super jumbos’ with five aircraft on order and scheduled for delivery from 2010. Qatar Airways moves to the New Doha International Airport in 2010, when the first phase of the new facility opens. For more information, visit www.ndiaproject.com

Qatar Airways is one of only six airlines in the world with a Five Star ranking for service and excellence awarded by Skytrax, the independent aviation industry monitoring agency. Skytrax also named Qatar Airways’ cabin crew as Best in the Middle East for the fifth year running in 2007 following a survey of more than 15 million passengers worldwide. For more information, log onto www.qatarairways.com

Qatar Airways Corporate Communications
Tel: +974 4496956, Fax: +974 4620132
E-mail: qrmedia@qatarairways.com.qa

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