Qatar Airways Group Chief Executive, His Excellency Mr. Akbar Al Baker, is one of the most recognisable figures in the global aviation industry. His vision and commitment enabled the ground-breaking development of Qatar Airways from a small regional carrier into one of the world’s leading global airlines in the span of just 20 years. Today, Qatar Airways flies one of the youngest, most sustainable and state-of-the-art fleets in the skies serving over 130 destinations across six continents.
Under his leadership, Qatar Airways has become one of the world’s most highly-respected airlines, competing on a scale very few airlines achieve. As a result, passengers have recognised the airline’s commitment to the values of safety, security, innovation and quality of service by awarding it the ‘Airline of the Year’ for a record fifth time, ‘World’s Best Business Class’, ‘Best Business Class Seat’ and ‘Best Airline in the Middle East’ at the 2019 World Airline Awards, managed by international air transport rating organisation Skytrax.
Widely known for his ambition and passion for innovation, H.E. Mr. Al Baker introduced the awardwinning Qsuite in March 2017. Featuring the industry’s first-ever double bed available in Business Class, with privacy panels that stow away, the unique and patented design allows passengers in adjoining seats to create their own private suites. The Qsuite seat layout is a 1-2-1 configuration, providing passengers with the most spacious, fully private, comfortable and social distanced Business Class product in the sky.
He also ensures Qatar Airways leads the way in showcasing the best possible product, with the airline being the proud launch customer of the A350-900 in 2014 and A350-1000 in 2018, as well as being the regional launch customer for the Boeing Dreamliner 787 in 2015.
In August 2017, H.E. Mr. Al Baker was announced as the Chairman of the Board of Governors (BoG) of the prestigious global aviation industry body, the International Air Transport Association (IATA), which came into effect in June 2018 for a period of one year. In November 2017 he was proudly named ‘Aviation Executive of the Year’ by the CAPA Centre for Aviation in recognition of his global influence and visionary approach to the airline industry.
H.E. Mr. Al Baker is also a member of the Executive Committee of the Arab Air Carriers Organisation (AACO) and is a non-executive Director of Heathrow Airport Holdings (HAH) – the company responsible for the running and development of the U.K.’s largest airport. In June 2015, the President of the Republic of France, François Hollande, presented H.E. Mr. Al Baker with the Legion of Honour in recognition of his leadership in the aviation industry.
In 2019 H.E. Mr. Al Baker was appointed Secretary-General of Qatar’s National Tourism Council (NTC).
A highly motivated individual, H.E. Mr. Al Baker is a successful businessman in Doha and beyond, holds a private pilot license and is also CEO of several divisions of Qatar’s national airline – including Qatar Executive, Hamad International Airport, Qatar Aviation Services, Qatar Aircraft Catering Company, Qatar Distribution Company, Qatar Duty Free and Internal Media Services, to name a few.
Born in Doha, he is a graduate in Economics and Commerce and worked at various levels in the Civil Aviation Directorate before being tasked with creating the world’s best airline in 1997.