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DOHA, QATAR - Qatar Airways continues to grow despite the airspace blockade from neighboring countries due to the political dispute. The airline claims to be the largest carrier of the world in terms of passenger numbers carried in the first quarter of the year.

“The State of Qatar can be proud that it is home to not only the ‘Best Airline in the World’ but also the current largest passenger airline, the largest cargo airline and the ‘Third Best Airport’ in the world,” 

Qatar Airways said in a statement.

The airline’s share of the passenger and air cargo market has grown significantly over the past three months. The airline’s ability to not only continue operating but also expand to more than 30 new destinations despite the challenges of the illegal blockade set the building blocks for it to be able to continue operating a robust and agile schedule throughout this crisis.

While other airlines in the region stopped services during the crisis, Qatar Airways has continued to operate a significant schedule operating more than 15,000 flights to take over 1.8mn people home.

The airline’s cargo division has prioritized medical and aid shipments working closely with governments and NGOs to transport in excess of 200,000 tonnes of essential supplies to impacted regions.

“It has been a testing few years but Qatar Airways will always continue to represent our country with integrity, flying our nation’s flag proudly around the world. Our robust business planning, swift actions in the face of the crisis, customer-focused solutions, and dedicated staff have enabled us to continue succeeding in the face of two unprecedented aviation events,"

Qatar Airways Group Chief Executive Akbar al-Baker said.

"Despite the many attempts by the blockading countries to blemish our excellent reputation, I am proud to say that my country and the airline have managed to persevere and grow over the last three years. Our airline like our country remains open to engagement, that is why we gave away 100,000 complimentary tickets to healthcare workers around the world to say thank-you for their important work during this crisis. We even allocated tickets for the blockading countries, further highlighting our noble and philanthropic intentions. I am pleased that healthcare professionals in all of these countries claimed the full allocation, and we look forward to taking them on a thoroughly deserved holiday as travel restrictions around the world ease,"

al-Baker added.

Qatar Airways Cargo has also become the leader in global air freight since the blockade was imposed. This follows the air freight carrier also receiving the Global Air Cargo Airline of the Year in 2019 and being runner-up for the Global Air Cargo Brand of the Year and International Cargo Airline of the Year in Africa awards.

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