Badr Mohammed Al-Meer has been named as the new group chief executive for Qatar Airways.

The most recent position held by Al-Meer was that of chief operating officer of Hamad International airport.

Al-Meer replaces Akbar Al Baker who was appointed as CEO of the airline in 1997 and has been with the country’s national carrier for 27 years.

Apart from Qatar Airways, Al Baker also held a key role in the country’s tourism department. On Sunday, it was also announced that Al Baker would be replaced by Saad bin Ali bin Saad Al Kharji as chairman of Qatar Tourism.

Badr Mohammed Al-Meer (Image: Sourced from Qatar Airways Newsroom)
Badr Mohammed Al-Meer (Image: Sourced from Qatar Airways Newsroom)

Qatar Airways said in a statement that Al Baker will be stepping down from his current position as group chief executive effective 5 November 2023, without citing any reason for his departure.

Qatar Airways Group reported a net profit of US$1.21 billion during the fiscal year 2022-2023. Overall revenue increased to US$21 billion, up 45 per cent compared to the previous year.

The airline carried 31.7 million passengers during the 2022-2023 fiscal year, an increase of 71 per cent over last year. As Qatar hosted last year’s FIFA World Cup, its national airline operated around 14,000 flights and brought in more than 1.4 million passengers during the World Cup.

Earlier this year, the airline announced several new routes and resumptions scheduled for this year. Plans were revealed for the launch of seven new destinations in 2023 including Chittagong, Juba, Kinshasa, Medan, Trabzon and both Lyon and Toulouse.

Qatar Airways on Airbus, supply chain issues and industry competition

This year, the airline is also resuming flights to 11 destinations including Beijing, Birmingham, Buenos Aires, Casablanca, Davao, Marrakesh, Nice, Osaka, Phnom Penh, Ras Al Khaimah and Tokyo Haneda.

In a significant and wide-reaching decision for the airline, in February this year, it issued a statement confirming that it and Airbus were “pleased to have reached an amicable and mutually agreeable settlement in relation to their legal dispute over A350 surface degradation and the grounding of A350 aircraft”.

The carrier has previously grounded more than 20 of its widebody A350s due to what it referred to as “concerns surrounding the accelerated rate of fuselage surface degradation”.