Emirates open to co-operation with Etihad
Emirates is open to co-operation with Etihad Airways in many areas including procurement, the airline’s president said yesterday.
Tim Clark said that while a merger between the carriers would not happen, there was “value to be had working more closely with” Abu Dhabi government-owned Etihad.
“There are many areas that the airlines could work together, like procurement. But we have to go the first jump first to understand what it is we could do and I’m simply the manager of one of the businesses. It is my superiors who have to make that call, not me,” he told Reuters.
The Emirates Group is owned by Investment Corporation of Dubai, the principal investment arm of the government.
Etihad, which has a history of landmark tie-ups with other airlines, including a US$100 million catering deal with Lufthansa agreed in February, has been undergoing a review of its business strategy.
“As we continue to transform our business, we constantly seek opportunities for innovative collaboration with other organisations, where it makes business and commercial sense,” an Etihad spokesman said.
Yesterday, Emirates said it would drop its flights to Auckland from Melbourne and Brisbane next year in the latest adjustment to its Australian operations, following the renewal of its partnership with Australia’s Qantas.
Emirates will drop flights to Auckland from Melbourne and Brisbane next year in the latest adjustment to its Australian operations, following the renewal of its partnership with Australia’s Qantas.
The Dubai-based airline will end the flights from March, while Qantas will add seven return flights per week between Melbourne and Auckland and an extra two returns per week between Brisbane and Auckland routes.
“These changes reflect demand and the airlines’ network strengths and provide more options for customers to travel between Australia and New Zealand to Asia, the UK/Europe, Middle East and Africa,” said Emirates yesterday.
Qantas’ new services will carry an Emirates code and will connect to Qantas’ London services via Perth or Singapore, and Emirates’ flight services between Australia and Europe through Dubai.
Emirates will retain its daily A380 flights from Dubai to Christchurch through Sydney, and is also considering more direct services between Dubai and New Zealand.
Qantas announced in August that it would drop Dubai as a transit hub for some of its London flights, as part of an extension of the carrier’s partnership arrangement with Emirates. The Australian carrier was keen to emphasis that the rerouting would not adversely affect Emirates or the carriers’ relationship, with Qantas passengers still able to transit through Dubai by flying on Emirates planes.
The routing changes await authorisation from the Australian competition and consumer commission and New Zealand’s transport ministry.
“Reauthorisation of the partnership will allow us to leverage our combined network strengths to offer customers even more flight choices and reciprocal benefits for our millions of frequent flyer members,” said Emirates president Tim Clark.
Emirates president Tim Clark and Qantas chief executive Alan Joyce shake hands on a renewed partnership