26 October 2005

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Business Today

Qantas seeks Air Malta deal

Matthew Vella

Qantas Airways Ltd has applied to the International Air Services Commission to start code-share arrangements with Air Malta on its daily services to the UK via Singapore.
The code share arrangement would be in addition to the existing code sharing between the two carriers on Qantas services between Australia and the UK via Bangkok.
In its application Qantas said Air Malta would carry the Qantas code between Melbourne and London via Singapore.
"Air Malta will offer seats on these flights on a free sale basis and will set its airfares independently of Qantas," the application said.
The flights would connect with Air Malta services between London and Malta.
On 9 March 2005, Qantas applied to permit Air Malta to code share on daily Qantas services between Australia and Thailand and between Australia and the United Kingdom. The proposed code share services will connect with services operated by Air Malta between London and Malta. The code share agreement between Qantas and Air Malta is a free sale agreement for passenger traffic only.
The Commission published a notice on 14 March 2005 inviting submissions about the application. No submissions were received.
According to Origin Destination data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics traffic between Australia and Malta averages 200 passengers each way each week with a strong seasonal flow to and from the Northern Summer. Over 70 per cent of the traffic on the route originates in Australia. The Commission has previously approved code sharing on routes serving similar markets recognising that the market could not sustain direct services by a single carrier let alone competing carriers.

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