EMIRATES' commitment to Glasgow in the face of competition from rivals in Edinburgh is a big vote of confidence in the city.

Securing the Dubai route in the first place was a real coup, and the airline's decision was justified as their investment paid off with the growth of the service to twice a day with room for further growth.

The catchment of the city airport is large and extends into the north of England as well as the city and central belt.

The boom in conference trade in recent years had benefited the airport and the boost Glasgow can expect following the Commonwealth Games means more people can be expected to visit.

This means the city can attract airlines that are not only looking at taking people out on holiday from Glasgow and bringing them back, but bringing people into the city, extending the scope for new routes.

All of which increases the need for improved surface access to the airport and hopefully a rail link will be delivered as a result of the £1bn City Deal cash to spend on projects.

Emirates' Dubai route was delivered with help from the Route Development Fund, which is no longer in existence, and the route's success is proof that a replacement scheme that fits the European Union competition rules is a must.