Gulf Air is 'key to Bahrain’s growth': Shaikh Al Khalifa
Bahrain's Finance Minister has defended the government's support of Gulf Air, claiming that tourism, employment and economic development in the country depends on the airline's success (TradeArabia News Service, 12-May-2011). Shaikh Ahmed bin Mohammed Al Khalifa made the remarks follows accusations from government MPs that the airline was “draining vital public funds”. He stated that a BHD400 million (USD1.1 billion) loan given to the airline was required for it to be able to compete. Shaikh Al Khalifa said he remains confident the airline will return to profitability “in the future”, as the country’s tourism sector and economy grows.