Airline fuel should be priced at $52 per barrel, according to the president of Emirates, Sir Tim Clark.

In an interview with CNBC at the Aviation Festival in London, Clark said that he believes that air fuel is “hugely overpriced.”

“If you are at $77 or $83 dollars [per barrel] it should be $52. That’s where it needs to be,” he said. “Those people, those countries, those entities that say they can’t make money on $52, they need to be doing something else.”

Additionally, Clark said fuel is “capped out” and unlikely to rise in price going forward.

“The forward curve is flat,” he said. “There’s a certain amount of flakiness going forward that fuel will rise above where it is today. That’s my view.”

The growth of Emirates and other Gulf airlines has been restrained by a long-term forecast of lower oil prices in recent years.

According to Clark, fuel prices at Emirates are now approximately 44 per cent higher than they were during the same time period in 2017.

However, he said the response from oil producers to the higher price is significantly different than it has been in the past.

“As the oil producing countries, largely in the Middle East get a benefit of that, historically there was an uptick very rapidly in demand, but we are not seeing that,” he said.

Last week, Emirates was named as the fourth biggest airline in the work in an International Air Transport Association (IATA) ranking of total scheduled passenger kilometres flown last year.

According to the statistics, the airline recorded 289 million passenger kilometres during the year, beaten only by American Airlines (324 million), Delta Air Lines (316.3 million) and United Airlines (311 million).

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