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Two A380 double decker jets have taken part in a special flypast over Sydney, to mark a new alliance between Australia’s Qantas Airways and Emirates.
Struggling Qantas has severed a partnership with British Airways and switched its hub to Dubai for European flights.
“This is one of the most important days in Qantas’ 92 years history. Our partnership with Emirates is probably the biggest partnership deal that Qantas will ever do,” said Alan Joyce, Qantas Chief Executive Officer.
Commenting on the special flypast, Tim Clark, Emirates Chief Executive Officer, said: “For somebody as old as me, who’s been in this business for as long as I have, I still got goose pimples watching those two magnificent airplanes flying so low and flying so well.”
Qantas announced the Emirates deal in September, ending its 17-year alliance with British Airways. It will enable the carrier to cut loss-making international routes and focus on domestic and budget operations.
Qantas has been hit with a record fuel bill, rising competition and a labour union opposed to its spending cuts.
The first flight to transit through Dubai was expected to leave Sydney on Sunday, bound for London.