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Kuwait mulls US route expansion despite travel restrictions

KUWAIT, July 2, 2017

Despite increasing US travel restrictions, Kuwait Airways is looking to add a flight to Washington, DC or Chicago, said a report.

Determined to return to profit and better compete with its more prosperous regional rivals, the Gulf carrier's additions are part of a wide-ranging restructuring and could also include new services to Seoul, South Korea; Manchester, England; Sarajevo, Bosnia-Herzegovina; or airports in China, Morocco and Saudi Arabia, said a report in Bloomberg.

There will be a “moderate expansion,” said Chairman Sami Al-Rushaid, noting that some routes may start as early as this year.

Kuwait Airways has been trying to counter the growth of its bigger rivals for years but its ambitions have been hampered by tough challenges ranging from US travel restrictions to reduced spending power in the region due to low oil prices, it said.

In a bid to compete more effectively in a crowded aviation market, Kuwait Airways has been aiming for a privatization since Parliament authorized a sale in 2008.

“I’d like to see the privatization process proceed,” said Al-Rushaid, who took charge of the airline in April. “We are looking at different approaches.”

Tags: US | Kuwait | Ban | travel | flight | Chicago | Washington | Air |

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