Extension to Air New Zealand and Air China alliance
The announcement was made by Air New Zealand Chief Executive Officer Greg Foran at the China Business Summit in Auckland this morning.
Mr Foran welcomed the extension, saying it will help New Zealand rebuild together.
"China is an incredibly important market for Aotearoa, and for Air New Zealand. The renewal of our strategic cooperation with Air China will be a vital boost for our tourism industry as it recovers from the severe impact of COVID-19.
"Our alliance with Air China has delivered, and will continue to deliver, real benefit to New Zealand – including greater choice, extra seats and more flights into New Zealand.
"It's a great example of how we can build sustainable air connectivity to and from New Zealand."
Mr Foran told the summit that although COVID-19 has affected passenger travel, the trade and business cooperation between China and New Zealand has remained relatively stable.
"Our Shanghai route has the highest proportion of cargo on any network we fly. Last year we carried 2,600 tonnes of exports to Shanghai – up 23 percent on the year before. We're proud to bring PPE into New Zealand and take the best of Aotearoa's premium fresh produce – seafood, red meat, dairy, fresh fruit and vegetables – to Shanghai."
Pre-pandemic, China was New Zealand's second-largest international visitor market (450,000 in 2019) and one of the most valuable in terms of holiday visitor spend ($1.5 billion).
The alliance agreement was first put in place in 2015 and will be extended to March 2026, having been approved by regulators in New Zealand and China.
Through the strategic alliance, services can be easily booked through either airline. Air New Zealand and Air China customers enjoy reciprocal frequent flyer benefits, such as earning and spending loyalty points and lounge access. Air New Zealand customers also receive better access to Air China's comprehensive domestic network. For Air China customers the alliance enhances their customers' access to New Zealand's regions.
Issued by Air New Zealand Communications.
About Star Alliance
The Star Alliance network was established in 1997 as the first truly global airline alliance to offer worldwide reach, recognition and seamless service to the international traveller. Its acceptance by the market has been recognised by numerous awards, including the Air Transport World Market Leadership Award and Best Airline Alliance by both Business Traveller Magazine and Skytrax. The member airlines are: Aegean Airlines, Air Canada, Air China, Air India, Air New Zealand, ANA, Asiana Airlines, Austrian, Avianca, Brussels Airlines, Copa Airlines, Croatia Airlines, EGYPTAIR, Ethiopian Airlines, EVA Air, LOT Polish Airlines, Lufthansa, Scandinavian Airlines, Shenzhen Airlines, Singapore Airlines, South African Airways, SWISS, TAP Air Portugal, THAI, Turkish Airlines, and United. Overall, the Star Alliance network currently offers more than 19,000 daily flights to more than 1,250 airports in 195 countries. Further connecting flights are offered by Star Alliance Connecting Partner, Juneyao Airlines.
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