Emi­rates open to co-op­er­a­tion with Eti­had

The National - News - - FRONT PAGE - JOHN EVERINGTON

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.

Reuters

Emi­rates pres­i­dent Tim Clark and Qantas chief ex­ec­u­tive Alan Joyce shake hands on a re­newed part­ner­ship

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