Qantas is sponsoring Malaysia Airlines’s (MAS) recently announced intention to join international travel alliance oneworld.
“With the world airline industry increasingly focused on alliances, we have carried out careful analysis of the options now available to Malaysia Airlines,” MAS CEO Azmil Zahruddin said in a statement. “The time is clearly right for our company to join one of the global service groups and oneworld is clearly the best option for us.”
Qantas, which itself is a long-time member of oneworld, was enthusiastic about the MAS bid, with CEO Alan Joyce telling The Australian that the airline was “very keen as part of Malaysian’s entry into oneworld to talk about how we can co-operate in the Malaysian and South-East Asian markets…we think there is a lot of opportunity for us to work together”. If approved by oneworld, MAS expects to start flying under the alliance banner by late 2012. The flagship carrier already has codeshare agreements with oneworld members Cathay Pacific and Royal Jordanian.
Oneworld CEO Bruce Ashby has also lent his support to the bid by MAS, tipping that the airline would “greatly enhance oneworld’s offering throughout the world’s fast growing region for air travel demand”.