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Emirates airline doesn't get govt handouts: President

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The president of the airline Emirates on Tuesday rebuffed complaints by some U.S. rivals that the carrier had an unfair competitive advantage.

The allegations are all "the stuff of nonsense,'' Tim Clark said on CNBC's "Closing Bell "

"We are an affordable competitor which people value and I'm sure that we will be allowed to continue on that basis," he said. "We will disprove the allegations made against us and I hope that we will receive some kind of apology from the protagonists once we do."

The CEOs of United Airlines, American Airlines and Delta have claimed that some of their competitors have an unfair edge from government subsidies. At an aviation summit in Washington this week, the U.S. airlines pointed specifically at Emirates, Qatar Airways and Etihad Airways as having broken the "open skies" deals, which aim to limit government intervention.

On Tuesday morning, Doug Parker, chief executive of American Airlines, told CNBC's "Squawk Box " that the three Middle Eastern airlines have collectively received about $42 billion in subsidies from their respective governments.

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Emirates has been in operation for the last 30 years but only began flying to the U.S. about 11 years ago. The airline is a subsidiary of The Emirates Group, which is owned by the government of Dubai. Along with Etihad and Qatar Airways, the Middle Eastern airlines serve 11 U.S. cities.

"I speak as the manager of Emirates airlines in Dubai and I can say categorically we do not receive subsidies from the government of Dubai," Clark said.

Emirates President Tim Clark.
Daniel Munoz | Reuters

The airline operates 84 flights a week at between 84 and 86 percent seat capacity and allegations of operating at a loss or dumping capacity are nonsense said Clark. He added that company's financial statements have been public since 1994.

On calling an oil bottom, Clark sees a further fall into the lower $40s but crude will settle between $50 and $70 during the latter part of 2016.

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