Singapore may be base for premium airline: Qantas CEO

Posted: April 23, 2012 in Airlines, Asia, Australia, Aviation & Airports (General News)
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AFP, SYDNEY: Australian flag carrier Qantas is still considering Singapore as the base for a premium carrier in Asia, chief executive Alan Joyce said in a report published yesterday.

Qantas’ Asia plans sparked a fierce domestic backlash when unveiled last year

Qantas’ Asia plans sparked a fierce domestic backlash when unveiled last year

Qantas’ Asian plans — which it sees as key to its strategy of revitalizing its loss-making international business — were dealt a blow when talks with Malaysian Airlines over the premium joint-venture collapsed last month.

Talks with Singapore on the issue had also lapsed, but Joyce told the Australian newspaper that the airline was still looking at a range of options for a premium Asian airline, including the city state.

“This will take a bit longer than we originally thought, but we’re still keen to set up a premium airline in Asia and we’re still looking at a range of options available to us — and Singapore is one of them,” Joyce said.

He added that Qantas was still talking to the Singapore government on the idea.

“We work with them on a range of issues and one of them is keeping the door open to the possibility of a premium airline,” Joyce told the newspaper.

Qantas holds a 65 percent share of the domestic Australian market, but has struggled with an underperforming international business.

It is attempting to refocus on Asia, the world’s fast-growing aviation market, and last month announced a new Hong Kong-based budget airline, Jetstar Hong Kong, which it hopes will be in the air next year.

However, Joyce said that for long-term success, Qantas, which has a weak market share in Asia, needed to participate in the premium end of the regional market.

“Qantas could probably live with it for the next few years, but I’m committed to [the idea] that in the future we have to address it, and the way to address it is to be involved in a premium airline in Asia,” he said…..

Read the full story at The Taipei Times…..

Taipei Times
23rd April 2012


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