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Etihad Airways to hire 2,000 pilots, cabin crew, and mechanics in 2024.

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Abu Dhabi's Etihad Airways is gearing up for significant expansion, aiming to capitalize on the increasing number of passengers by bolstering its workforce. The airline intends to recruit up to 2,000 pilots, cabin crew, and mechanics by 2025 to accommodate its growth trajectory. CEO Antonoaldo Neves outlined the ambitious hiring plans, emphasizing the need for additional personnel to support the addition of 15 new aircraft to the fleet by 2025.

Neves underscored the importance of training initiatives to prepare for the influx of new aircraft, stating that the latter half of the year will be dedicated to equipping staff for the upcoming expansion. Etihad's strategy involves ramping up flight operations, frequencies, and destinations to capitalize on rising passenger demand. The airline witnessed a notable increase in its passenger load factor, reaching 86% last year compared to 82% in 2022.

The airline's financial results for 2023 reflect its resilience and growth trajectory, with total revenue amounting to Dh20.3 billion and a net profit of Dh525 million. A significant contributor to this performance was the robust growth in passenger revenue, which surged by Dh4 billion compared to the previous year. However, Neves highlighted challenges stemming from the shortage of aircraft in the market, leading to high load factors, with load factors reaching as high as 92% within a span of just six days in March.

Looking ahead, Neves expressed optimism about Etihad's future prospects, aiming to triple passenger numbers from 10 million in 2022 to over 30 million by 2030. He projected a growth rate of 25 to 30 percent in 2024, underscoring the airline's potential to serve 17 million passengers by the same year with the requisite aircraft. To achieve these ambitious targets, Etihad is committed to nurturing Emirati talent through specialized training programs for pilots, engineers, and mechanics.

Emiratisation remains a top priority for the airline, with Neves envisioning at least one-third of its pilot workforce to be Emirati. He emphasized the exceptional skills and representation that Emirati pilots bring to the airline, setting a target of 35 to 40 percent of pilots being Emiratis. Despite challenges posed by the scarcity of pilots, Etihad is making significant strides toward achieving this goal, with plans to intake 300 pilots annually, of which 70 to 100 are expected to be Emiratis. Through strategic recruitment and training initiatives, Etihad aims to position itself for sustained growth and success in the dynamic aviation industry.

March 7, 2024 3:53 p.m. 12832

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