Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Qantas Airways Ltd will increase the frequency on a number of its international routes, as the national carrier pushes forward with its push to turn around its global operations.

Qantas chief executive officer Alan Joyce told an American Chamber of Commerce in Australia luncheon in Melbourne the airline would facilitate the changes through schedule optimisation and ongoing transformation efforts within the its international division.

"We're able to make these changes by simply using our existing assets better," Mr Joyce said.

Qantas will start a new route between Perth and Auckland, offered on a seasonal basis between early December and the end of January, as well as upgrading one return Sydney-Hong Kong service to an Airbus A380 aircraft.

The airline will also increase the frequency of the Brisbane–Los Angeles to daily using the aircraft made available by the A380 upgrade on the Hong Kong route.

"The Qantas Group is serious about Asia and we've already increased capacity to Hong Kong by 10 per cent this year," Mr Joyce said.

"As well as adding almost five per cent more seats per week on this route, the aircraft swap will increase the amount of flying done by our flagship A380 fleet into Asia.

"Our Brisbane to Los Angeles service is a strong performer and upgrading it to daily will improve the travel options for customers heading to the United States from Queensland, which has great links to our domestic and regional networks."

Joyce reiterates support for second Sydney airport

Asked about the possibility of a second Sydney airport, Mr Joyce said first and foremost it was important for the airline to maintain a good relationship with both sides of politics.

"Good companies make sure that they manage both sides of the political spectrum," he said.

"As a national carrier I think both sides realise how important Qantas is."

Mr Joyce said there was no doubt some sectors of the business community were suffering from a lack of confidence in the run up to the September election, but said he was hopeful the outcome of the federal ballot would alleviate many of the wide-held fears.

He Joyce reiterated the airline's support for a second Sydney airport, saying the group had always been a "supporter" of the proposal.

"We as the largest carrier in Australia want to make sure we have the right capacity, the right growth opportunities going forward.

"A constrained Sydney is not good for anybody."

Mr Joyce said the second airport should be viewed as a positive for Western Sydney and pointed to the number of jobs its would create as a major benefit.


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