The Emirates Group has reported its highest-ever annual profit of US$3 billion for the year of 2022-2023.

That figure is in stark contrast to the US$1 billion loss it posted the previous year.

For the financial year ended March 31, 2023, the Emirates Group reported revenue of US$32.6 billion, an increase of 81 per cent over the previous year’s results.

The group’s cash balance was US$11.6 billion – another record for it – and was up 65 per cent year-on-year.

Along with those figures, the group reported that its total workforce increased by 20 per cent to 102,379 employees.

In 2022-23, the group collectively invested US$2 billion in new aircraft, facilities, equipment, companies and technologies. These included the commencement of a massive multi-billion dollar aircraft cabin retrofit programme; an order for five new 777 freighters; the building of a new pilot training centre; the opening of Bustanica, the world’s largest vertical farm in Dubai; a new training aircraft for its cadets at Emirates Flight Training Academy; dnata’s acquisition of 30 per cent shares to gain full ownership of its ground handling operations in Brazil; and the building of a new advanced cargo facility in Erbil, Iraq.

The airline also phased out four older aircraft comprising of two A380, one Boeing 777-300ERs and one Freighter. Its total fleet count at the end of March stood at 260 units, with the average fleet age being 9.1 years.

Emirates relaunched flights to six destinations and increased operations to 62 cities across its network throughout last year. By March 31, 2023, the Emirates network comprised 150 destinations across six continents. Its flagship A380 aircraft destination network grew to 43 as of March 31 this year.

Emirates’ total revenue for the financial year increased 81 per cent to US$29.3 billion. Its total operating costs increased by 57 per cent from last financial year. Fuel accounted for 36 per cent of operating costs compared to 23 per cent in 2021-22. The airline’s fuel bill increased by 143 per cent to US$9.2 billion compared to the previous year, which the airline attributed to a higher uplift of 49 per cent in line with its capacity expansion, coupled with higher average fuel price which it said increased by 48 per cent.

The airline reported a record profit of US$2.9 billion (compared to last year’s US$1.1 billion loss), and also its best profit margin of 9.9 per cent which is its best performance ever.

Emirates carried 43.6 million passengers (up 123 per cent) in 2022-23, with seat capacity up by 78 per cent.

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Emirates closed the financial year with cash assets of US$10.2 billion, 79 per cent higher than it did as of March 31, 2022.

Meanwhile the group’s dnata division increased its profit by 201 per cent to US$90 million in 2022-23, and its total revenue increased by 74 per cent to US$4.1 billion.

Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, chairman and chief executive, Emirates airline and Group, said: “The group is the biggest player in the UAE’s aviation sector, which supports over 770,000 jobs and generates an estimated contribution to GDP of over US$47 billion. With our growth plans, and in line with the Dubai Economic Agenda D33, we expect to significantly increase our contribution to the UAE’s GDP over the next decade through direct and indirect employment, supply chain spending, tourism spend, and trade and commerce benefits from the movement of cargo.”