File - Emirates Airlines chief Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed al-Maktoum gives a press conference in Dubai on May 8, 2014. AFP PHOTO/KARIM SAHIB
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The U.S. tussle opens a new flank in the global civil aviation industry, which in recent years has gravitated toward the Gulf, where Emirates has leveraged a record number of wide-body jets and Dubai's position as a crossroads for global flight paths to build the world's largest international airline in just three decades. Emirates plans to hire 11,000 people over the next year, its ambitions contrasting with shrinking workforces at the likes of Deutsche Lufthansa AG and Air France-KLM Group. In 2013, the last period for which full-year revenue figures are available for Emirates, the company ranked as the world's sixth-largest airline, behind the three leading U.S. carriers as well as Air France-KLM and Cologne-based Lufthansa.Emirates flies to nine U.S. cities – including Boston and Chicago – and has carried more than 10 million passengers on U.S. flights since first operating there in 2004 .While many other airlines use the popular 777 on long routes, Emirates' service and passenger experience sets it apart, Sheikh Ahmad said.
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