12 Dec '11, 1am

Qantas pushes on with Asian premium airline plan

SYDNEY: Qantas chief Alan Joyce said Monday he was pushing ahead with plans for a joint-venture premium airline in Asia while insisting damage to the brand from grounding the fleet was only "temporary". Uncertainty over global economic conditions and volatile fuel prices have sparked reports that Qantas was ready to shelve plans for an Asian carrier as part of its strategy to refocus on the fast-growing region. But Joyce said talks were ongoing, with Kuala Lumpur or Singapore seen as the most likely base. "We have announced our plans to invest in a premium airline based in Asia," he said at an investor presentation. "Talks continue, and it remains premature to make any announcements at this stage. "Our aim is to position ourselves within the Southeast Asian marketplace in advance of planned aviation liberalisation." Within five years, the Australian flag carrier plans to h...

Full article: http://www.channelnewsasia.com/stories/afp_asiapacific_bu...

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Qantas pushing ahead with plans for joint-venture Asian premium airline, with Singapore a likely base

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