A new bilateral deal between Australia and China will more than triple seat capacity between the two countries by 2016.
Weekly seat capacity will immediately increase by 136%, adding 4,000 seats for airlines flying from the main gateway cities of Beijing, Shanghai or Guangzhou and 26,500 seats a week for airlines flying from a second or third tier city.
Total capacity between Australia and China will almost triple from the current limit of 22,500 seats to 67,000 seats a week by 2016.
Sydney Airport managing director and chief executive officer Kerrie Mather was among those to welcome the deal. “Based on current growth rates, China is on track to overtake New Zealand as our largest inbound market in 2016 and this agreement will enable airlines to capitalise on this market’s consistently strong growth.”
Mather added, “Some of our largest unserved markets are outside of the primary hubs of Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou and our strategy is to attract more visitors from these cities.”