Etihad Airways plans more Australian, Indian routes

ABU DHABI — United Arab Emirates-based Etihad Airways said yesterday it would launch daily flights to Sydney, Australia in June and add new five routes to destinations in India as Middle East air traffic demand surges.

By (Reuters)

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Published: Thu 24 May 2007, 8:55 AM

Last updated: Sat 4 Apr 2015, 8:37 PM

Etihad, which already flies three times a week to Sydney, is in talks with Australian authorities about flying to other Australian cities, Geert Boven, an Etihad executive vice-president, said without elaborating.

The airline, which has ordered four Airbus A380 aircraft, will be allowed up to 28 flights a week to Australia by 2010 under an aviation agreement between Australia and the UAE.

Rivals Qatar Airways and Emirates have also been given permission to put on additional flights as Australia increases access rights for Middle East airlines.

In India, Etihad would also start three times weekly service to Trivandrum on May 30 and begin flying to Kochi four times a week on June 2, Boven said.

“By the winter, Etihad will start daily flights to these cities, boosting traffic between UAE and India,” he said, adding the airline was also seeking to fly to Bangalore, Chennai and Hyderabad.

Etihad said this month it would seek to borrow $500 million by early July to finance four Airbus A340-600 aircraft. It already borrowed $400 million this year from eight banks to finance aircraft purchases.

The Abu Dhabi-based airline will launch flights to Dublin on July 1 and Milan in September, Boven added.

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