Major celebrations as Qatar Airways marks five-year anniversary in Berlin15.12.2010
The high expectations Qatar Airways had of Berlin at the time have been met: thanks to the outstanding capacity of the airline’s Airbus A320, daily flights are now operated to the Middle East. The route rights for an initial four flights a week were extended in February 2008 to include a daily service. Occasionally, according to demand, larger Airbus A330 jets were also operated. Plans of the rapidly growing airline to expand not only included the Berlin connection, however: in the same period, Qatar Airways more than doubled its aircraft and built up a fleet of ultra-long-haul Boeing B777ER jets, enabling travel from Berlin to Australia. The following year saw the number of destinations rise from 69 to 100, some of which were served by several flights per day.
On 15 December 2005, the Governing Mayor of Berlin, Klaus Wowereit, welcomed the new airline to the capital and thus underlined the importance of the new route for the city’s social, political and economic life. With its new service, Qatar Airways became a forerunner for the now very tightly knit economic relations with Qatar. The richest country in Asia holds shares in major enterprises in Germany, and conversely, local companies in Germany are actively involved in infrastructure and energy projects in the desert state – for example in researching alternative fuels or the optimum use of solar energy or setting up a public transport system in the country.
Akbar Al Baker, CEO of Qatar Airways: “In order for two states to be able to develop relations, certain basic requirements must be met. Good traffic connections between capitals, for example, are essential. We laid the foundations for this exactly five years ago on launching our service in Berlin. This evidently marked the beginning of a very successful era of cooperation between Germany and Qatar.” Since then, his company has continuously worked on improving connections and campaigned for more route rights, from which both parties profit. The result is the launch of the new Stuttgart–Doha route as of March next year and 11 rather than one weekly flight to Munich, increasing the number of flights between Germany and Qatar to 31 per week.
Prof. Dr. Rainer Schwarz, CEO of Berlin Airports: “We are equally delighted, and warmly congratulate Qatar Airways on its five-year anniversary in Berlin. Qatar Airways is a key strategic partner for Berlin Airports – the people of Berlin and Brandenburg have profited from this stable partnership for the past five years now. The long-haul route from Berlin to Doha has established itself. Together, we are committed to continuing this successful cooperation at the new Berlin Brandenburg International Airport (BBI) as of June 2012.”