Routes Weekly top five: Qatar Airways, World Routes Marketing Awards, Ryanair, Italy, South African Airways and more

Our top five stories this week: Diplomatic crisis 'will not block Qatar Airways' growth'; World Routes 2018 Marketing Awards; Ryanair's Dublin cuts; Italy in focus; SAA targets partnerships and more.

Our top five stories on Routes Weekly this week - subscribe here:

1. Diplomatic crisis 'will not block Qatar Airways' growth' 
Qatar Airways chief executive Akbar al Baker lifts the lid on the impact of the year-long blockade by four neighbouring states, saying the International Civil Aviation Organisation must do more to reopen the skies. But he remains hopeful the airline will hit its target of operating 250 routes by 2022. Read more

2. World Routes 2018 Marketing Awards shortlists revealed
Discover which airports, tourism authorities and individuals have been recognised in the industry’s most coveted awards. Read more

3. Ryanair to cut Dublin fleet and grow Polish airline 
Ryanair has said there will be “few route closures” from Dublin despite cutting its fleet at the airport by 20 percent this winter. Read more

4. Analysis: Italy's strong international growth
Following the announcement that the 26th World Routes will be held in Milan in 2020, Routesonline looks at some of the key facts and figures shaping Italy’s aviation market. Read more

5. SAA targets South America partnerships
Pumla Luhabe tells Routes Africa conference that the carrier is looking west to re-balance its network. Read more

Route rundown: HKG-SEA, DOH-GOT, SGN-KIX
Bulletin board: aviation industry news round-up
Milan to host World Routes 2020
Norwegian hopes to strengthen presence with Swedish AOC 
In case you missed it: key stories from Routes Africa 2018
China Southern Airlines president and CEO confirmed as speaker for World Routes 2018