Qatar Airways Group chief executive Akbar Al Baker has been appointed the chairman of the IATA board of governors.
Al Baker (centre) with IATA director general Alexandre de Juniac (left) and AGM chairman (and Qantas chief) Alan Joyce
He replaces Singapore Airlines chief executive Goh Choon Phong, whose one-year term expired at the end of IATA’s 74th annual general meeting in Sydney.
“I look forward to continuing my work in the coming year for our great aviation industry, connecting safely the peoples of the world, a sector which will only continue to grow in the years ahead, and one in which I am most proud to work and represent one of the world’s leading airlines,” says Al Baker.
He adds that he is honoured by the appointment, which is “made all the more pertinent in the difficult circumstances” in which Qatar Airways currently operates.
His comments come as several Gulf and Middle Eastern states imposed a blockade on Qatar in June last year.
IATA also announced that Carsten Spohr, chairman and CEO of Lufthansa, will succeed Al Baker as chairman from June 2019.