Qatar Airways welcomed dignitaries, local officials and international media to a packed press conference in Sydney on 3 March to mark the launch of direct flights between Doha and the airline’s third gateway in Australia, which is expected to bring an additional AUD$240 million to the local economy each year.
Qatar Airways Group Chief Executive, His Excellency Mr. Akbar Al Baker, addressed approximately 80 local media alongside Sydney Airport Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, Ms. Kerrie Mather; Qatar Airways SVP South East Asia and South West Pacific, Mr. Marwan Koleilat and Qatar Airways Country Manager Australasia, Mr. Adam Radwanski.
H.E. Mr. Al Baker said: “Australia is a destination on everyone’s wish list and I hope that by launching our new direct service to Sydney we can help even more visitors discover this spectacular country. With the addition of Sydney, and Adelaide later this year, we will double our capacity to and from Australia in the first half of 2016. This swift and significant increase in service demonstrates our commitment to the Australian market and to our Australian passengers, as we offer them the opportunity to fly in comfort onwards to more than 150 worldwide destinations.
“There are many similarities in our cultures and home countries – Qatar, like Australia, is known for its hospitality, its warm welcome and its forward thinking. These qualities are reflected in the strength of our current trade, totalling AUD$1.56 billion in 2014. We look forward to building on this success and to going places together.”
|Qatar Airways Group Chief Executive, His Excellency Mr. Akbar Al Baker (centre left), addressed a packed Sydney press conference in celebration of the opening of the airline's third Australian gateway, alongside Sydney Airport Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, Ms. Kerrie Mather (left); Qatar Airways SVP South East Asia and South West Pacific, Mr. Marwan Koleilat (centre right) and Qatar Airways Country Manager Australasia, Mr. Adam Radwanski (right).|
Qatar Airways has been serving Australia since 2009 when it commenced flights from Melbourne, later adding flights from Perth in 2012. The award-winning airline will fly a Boeing 777-300 daily from Sydney to Doha connecting Australian passengers to its global network of more than 150 destinations.
This Sydney route is expected to generate an estimated 3,000 jobs in New South Wales and will contribute millions of dollars in tourism and cargo freight to the local economy. The new service will connect Australia’s leading exporters to Qatar Airways Cargo’s global network of more than 150 stations providing 84 tonnes of cargo capacity per week. Qatar Airways Cargo is the third largest international cargo carrier, already carrying 301 tonnes of freight in the belly hold of its passenger aircraft into and out of Perth and Melbourne per week.
“We’re thrilled to welcome Qatar Airways to Sydney Airport. Qatar Airways is a three-time Skytrax Airline of the Year winner and will provide passengers with more choice, a quality product and seamless connectivity through Doha’s new Hamad International Airport to destinations around the world,” Sydney Airport Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer Kerrie Mather said.
“Qatar Airways’ new daily service will boost tourism, providing an additional 245,000 seats per year, generating an estimated 3,000 jobs and contributing more than AUD$240 million to the Australian economy.
|Qatar Airways Group Chief Executive, His Excellency Mr. Akbar Al Baker (centre right), alongside Sydney Airport Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, Ms. Kerrie Mather (centre left) at the press conference|
“It will also foster trade, providing greater air cargo capacity and access to the Middle East. Australian exports to Doha grew by 23 per cent last year, and the State of Qatar’s high demand for livestock, cereal, meat, dairy products and crops provides a significant opportunity for Australian exporters.”
Qatar Airways’ hub, Hamad International Airport in Doha, offers passengers travelling from Sydney a comfortable and efficient transit with an average connection time of just 90 minutes. The luxurious and modern airport, less than two years old, has more than 40,000 square metres of retail space and restaurants including more than 70 retail and 30 food and beverage outlets, as well as a 25-metre swimming pool, gym, hotel and spa.
Passengers travelling on board the Qatar Airways Boeing 777 to and from Sydney in Business Class can enjoy one of the most comfortable fully-flat beds in the sky with 78 inches of seat pitch. In addition, the on-demand à la carte menu service allows Business Class passengers to order anything from the menu at any time during the flight. The aircraft also features the state-of the-art Oryx One entertainment system, with more than 3,000 entertainment options on individual screens in all classes.