MUSCAT: As many as 16,000 passenger flights have been cancelled in the Middle East since the end of January as the outbreak of coronavirus has left the regional aviation industry reeling.
According to figures released by International Air Transport Association (IATA), the Gulf region’s aviation industry is bracing for a $7 billion financial hit and the loss of up to nearly 347,000 jobs.
Oman Air to reduce workforce
In Oman, the IATA said the disruptions could result in 2 million loss in passenger volumes and $328 million loss in base revenues in Oman. The disruptions to air travel could also put at risk about 36,700 jobs in the country. National airline Oman Air has already confirmed of reducing workforce to sustain its operations.
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In a statement issued by Al Raisi (a copy of which is available with The Arabian Stories), admitted that Oman Air’s operations have been significantly hit. “Given the impact of COVID-19 on our operations, we have had to reduce our flights, suspend routes and park plans in a way we have never had to do adhere.
“With our flight operations begin significantly reduced, we will have to make difficult decisions in order to guarantee the future of our national carrier. Our revenues have declined to a point where we can no longer sustain our current level of employment,” Al Raisi said in the statement.
“Due to circumstances beyond our control, we will have to reduce our workforce,” he added.