SYDNEY, 2 December 2013: Australian Treasurer Joe Hockey has indicated he would resist the government taking a stake in Qantas, in comments reported Saturday, after calling for a debate on the national carrier’s future.
A government buyback of 5% or 10% of Qantas has been suggested as a measure to help the airline if there is to be no lifting of current foreign ownership restrictions on it, but Hockey appeared cool on the idea.
“Of course, the government is very, very reluctant to own an airline,” the Treasurer told The Weekend Australian newspaper.
ZAGREB, 29 November 2013: Croatia will announce a new offer for investors to buy up to 49% of its loss-making state-owned Croatia Airlines after an initial call this week found no takers, the government said Thursday.
“Early next year, when we announce the second round for initial offers after publishing the 2013 results, there will be (firms) interested in Croatia Airlines,” Transport Minister Sinisa Hajdas Doncic was quoted by the state-run HINA news agency as saying.
Doncic said that the expiry of a 30-day deadline late Wednesday with no bids in the first offer was “nothing dramatic”.
SYDNEY, 29 November 2013: Australian treasurer Joe Hockey on Thursday raised the prospect of allowing majority foreign ownership of national carrier Qantas in the face of increasing overseas support for rival Virgin Australia.
Qantas chief executive Alan Joyce has been lobbying politicians in recent weeks about what he claimed was no longer a level playing field in the nation’s skies.
His main gripe is that Virgin Australia is now majority-owned by state-backed carriers Singapore Airlines, Air New Zealand and Abu Dhabi-based Etihad and that with their financial clout it is able to set uncompetitively low prices to win customers from Qantas.
YANGON, 28 November 2013: Yangon International Airport’s domestic departure lounge will be replaced by an entirely new building over the next 18 months, authorities confirmed this week.
Airport general manager, Win Ko said: “The departure lounge will be demolished and rebuilt. Until it is ready we will have to use the lounge provided for VIPs as the main departure lounge”
Yangon Airport is Myanmar’s main international gateway and currently services 2.7 million passengers a year.
BRUSSELS, 28 November 2013: Irish low-cost pioneer Ryanair moved into the airline mainstream Wednesday, announcing plans for 10 new routes from Brussels airport to a raft of holiday destinations.
“Ryanair is delighted to announce Brussels Zaventem as our second base in Belgium in addition to Brussels Charleroi,” Ryanair chief Michael O’Leary told a press conference.
Daily flights to Alicante, Barcelona, Ibiza, Lisbon, Malaga, Palma, Porto, Rome, Valencia and Venice “are ideal for business passengers or families … who can also enjoy Ryanair’s recently announced customer service improvements,” O’Leary said.
NEW YORK, 28 November 2013: American Airlines parent AMR expects to emerge from bankruptcy and complete its merger with US Airways on 9 December the companies said Wednesday.
The two companies, which are merging to become the “American Airlines Group,” said a US bankruptcy court Wednesday approved the merger of the two US airlines.
The companies will cease trading under their respective tickers after Friday, 6 December. Common shares for American Airlines will trade under the “AAL” ticker on Nasdaq starting the following Monday.
BANGKOK, 27 November 2013: Airports of Thailand has tightened rules controlling taxis picking up passengers at Suvarnabhumi ostensibly to improve traffic flow.
AoT’s Suvarnabhumi Airport director, Rawewan Netrakavesna, said since 1 November the airport assigned the outer service road on the fourth level as the drop-off point for passengers only.
“It will help us to prevent taxis from waiting at the fourth level to pick-up passengers,” the director explained.
HANOI, 27 November 2013: Asiana Airlines will add four flights a week from Incheon in South Korea to the Vietnamese capital, Hanoi effective 9 December.
Asiana Airlines’ Hanoi representative, Seon Jong Rok, said the airline will use an Airbus 321 (OZ728) with 171 seats for the additional four flights, which will operate on Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Sunday.
It gives the airline daily services on the Hanoi–Incheon route.
FRANKFURT, 27 November 2013: Germany’s main airline Lufthansa is to rescind its code-sharing agreement with Turkish Airlines because the deal is not economically attractive enough, a company spokesman said Tuesday.
“We can confirm that our cooperation (with Turkish Airlines) in the area of frequent-flying programme and code sharing is no longer profitable for us economically,” the spokesman told AFP.
“As a result, we have decided to end the code-sharing flights, which are used less and less frequently by passengers and not attractive for us,” he said.
BANGKOK, 26 November 2013: THAI Airways International will launch three weekly flights between Bangkok and Sendai in Japan, 3 December.
Speaking at a press conference, Monday, the airline’s senior executive vice president commercial department, Chokchai Panyayong, said Japan was a major target market and growing fast especially after the Japanese government approved visa-free travel for Thai tourists, 1 July and the Yen’s depreciation against the baht.
He said visa exemtion increased Thai travel to Japan 103.2%, according to the latest figures released by Japan National Tourism Organisation.