China Southern may launch flights to Adelaide as part of a tourism agreement with the South Australian government.
Currently, the airline serves Brisbane, Melbourne, Perth and Sydney from its Guangzhou hub, and recently commenced Sydney-Shenzhen services.
Premier Jay Weatherill said the tourism agreement he signed with China Southern in Guanzhou on Friday would help secure a “direct passenger services” between Adelaide and Guangzhou.
“The interest from China Southern Airlines has been growing and we are now committing to help their market to build awareness of South Australia by building a strong business case for flights to Adelaide,” Weatherill said in a statement on Sunday.
The SA premier said a direct flight to mainland China would create 100 jobs.
Nonstop international destinations from Adelaide include Auckland (Air New Zealand), Bali (Jetstar, Tigerair Australia), Dubai (Emirates), Hong Kong (Cathay Pacific), Kuala Lumpur (Malaysia Airlines) and Singapore (Singapore Airlines).
Also, the South Australian capital will have a nonstop link to Doha from May when Qatar Airways begins flights with Airbus A350-900s.
In addition to its Australian network, China Southern also serves Auckland and Christchurch in New Zealand. The Skyteam alliance member operates 70 flights a week to this part of the world during peak periods.
SA Tourism Minister Leon Bignell said there were about 32,000 visitors from China in calendar 2015, up 4.7 per cent from the prior year. China brought in the fourth most visitors to South Australia.
Comment has been sought from China Southern.