Australia's Qantas and Vietnam Airlines to invest $139mln to expand Jetstar Pacific fleet

By    April 20, 2016 | 08:58 pm PT
Australia's Qantas and Vietnam Airlines to invest $139mln to expand Jetstar Pacific fleet
A Vietnam Airlines aircraft next to a Jetstar Pacific aircraft at Hanoi's Noi Bai international airport. Photo by AFP
National carrier Vietnam Airlines and Australia’s Qantas Airways Ltd will invest an additional $139 million in their Vietnam-based budget carrier Jetstar Pacific joint venture, the government’s new online portal quoted executives from the companies as saying.

The plan to acquire new planes will help Jetstar Pacific to treble the size of its fleet by 2020, said Vietnam Airlines executives on Wednesday at a meeting to introduce more services options to passengers.

According to the plan, Qantas will invest $100 million while national carrier Vietnam Airlines will make up the remaining $39 million to increase Jetstar Pacific’s fleet of aircrafts to 30 in the next four years, said airline executives.

Vietnam Airlines owns 70 percent of low-cost carrier Jetstar Pacific while Qantas holds the remaining 30 percent.

The government’s investment arm SCIC divested from Jetstar Pacific in early 2012 following Vietnam Airlines’ decision to acquire the majority stake in the low-cost carrier. The new partnership between Vietnam Airlines and Qantas received initial capital of $26 million.

Jetstar Pacific, Vietnam’s first low-cost airline, began operating in 1991 as Pacific Airlines under the government’s control. In 2007, Qantas acquired an 18 percent stake in the airline, which adopted the name Jetstar Pacific a year later and became part of the Australian carrier's low-cost airline network.

The eight-year-old budget carrier has a fleet of 12 planes, including five Boeing 737 and two Airbus A320, and conducts about 150 flights a week to seven cities in Vietnam.

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