Etihad Airways has announced the purchase of two more Airbus A330-200 passenger aircraft in a deal worth US$418 million at current list prices.
The purchase comes as the airline starts a codeshare service to Hong Kong in February 2013 in partnership with Air Seychelles, subject to regulatory approval.
The three return services per week between Abu Dhabi and Hong Kong will be operated by equity partner Air Seychelles.
The new codeshare supplements Etihad Airways' expansion in mainland China, following the launch of its first service to Beijing in March 2008, and more recently to Chengdu in December 2011 and Shanghai in March earlier this year.
James Hogan, Etihad Airways president and chief executive officer, said: "Hong Kong's fast growing economy and booming middle class have brought a remarkable increase in the number of travellers in recent years.
"The new service connects two of the world's leading international financial and tourism centres, a move we believe will stimulate the growth of commerce and trade between the UAE and China, the UAE's second largest trading partner.
"With our 40 per cent equity stake in Air Seychelles, it makes strong commercial sense for us to work together on opportunities where cooperation is possible."
The UAE carrier has also converted seven of its previously ordered Airbus A320s to the larger Airbus A321 model.
The new Airbus A330 aircraft are scheduled for delivery in January and March 2014 respectively.
Thursday, November 1, 2012