ChAFTA Case Study: Transport - Qantas Airways Limited

16 October 2015

Transport – Qantas Airways Limited

Qantas is Australia’s largest international and domestic airline. Today, the Qantas Group employs more than 30,000 people and is a diverse global aviation business. Qantas and Jetstar carry around 47 million passengers each year.

Qantas believes ChAFTA will enable increased investment, trade and tourism between Australia and foreign countries and free trade agreements are generally regarded as having a positive impact on demand in the aviation industry.

China is an important market for both the Qantas Group and Australia. It is envisaged that the quick ratification of ChAFTA will provide a platform for the Qantas Group to strengthen its freight and passenger operations to and from China and build on existing relationships with both China Eastern and China Southern, in order to provide the necessary framework to support increased trade, tourism and corporate travel links between Australia and China.  

ChAFTA, in parallel with the Qantas Group’s own-operated freight and passenger services to and from China and its strategic commercial partnerships with China Eastern and China Eastern, will provide a strong platform for expanding investment, trade and people links between Australia and China. 

Qantas has been operating to China for many years and today has a daily service between Sydney and Shanghai using Airbus A330 aircraft. 

In addition to freight carried in the belly-hold of passenger aircraft, Qantas also operates dedicated freighter services between Australia and Shanghai, and from Australia to China (Shanghai/Chongqinq) and beyond to the United States, and ad hoc charters to various destinations on mainland China. 

ChAFTA will facilitate increased opportunities for freight into China from Australia, particularly for agricultural products. In the financial year 2014–15 Qantas carried over 25,000 tonnes of freight between Australia and China on dedicated freight services and close to 5,000 tonnes of belly-hold freight on passenger services.

In May 2015, Jetstar announced the launch of a twice-weekly service between Wuhan and the Gold Coast from 29 September 2015, which will contribute to increased Chinese visitation to Australia. The services are in partnership with Dalian Wanda Group that will leverage their significant presence in China to market and sell the seats. Dalian Wanda Group was founded in 1988 and operates in four major areas – commercial property, luxury hotels, culture and tourism, and department stores.


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