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New China Airlines flights to deliver $50+ million tourism

Media Release | 03 August 2012

New China Airlines flights to deliver $50+ million tourism and trade value.

New 4 times a week service to Taipei via Sydney joins existing 3 times a week service to Taipei via Brisbane, effectively offering daily connections from New Zealand

Will help drive Ambition 2020 targets for trade and tourism with Taiwan, a key Asian market

Auckland Airport today secured further growth from Asia with China Airlines confirming that they are commencing a new service from Auckland to Taipei, flying four times a week via Sydney. The new service starts on 28th October 2012.

The new service complements the existing China Airlines three times a week service from Auckland to Taipei via Brisbane, now effectively offering a daily connection between New Zealand and the high-value tourism and trade market of Taiwan.

Auckland Airport general manager aeronautical commercial, Glenn Wedlock, said, “This announcement marks a significant step towards stronger trade and tourism links between Taiwan and New Zealand and will deliver fantastic opportunities for growth from a number of markets this year. We have been working on a number of development programmes in Taiwan and wider Asia as part of our Ambition 2020 initiative. The new services with China Airlines will help deliver on some key targets and drive in excess of $50 million in tourism and trade benefit for New Zealand.”

Taiwan has a population of 23 million and is considered a mature and high-value market that could, at a minimum, increase to about 21,000 inbound visitors to New Zealand per year by 2020. The new four times weekly Auckland to Taipei service via
Sydney will be served by A330-300 aircraft, with a total of 307 seats, including 30 business class and 277 economy class seats. The services will therefore add over 120,000 seats to the Auckland route and provide important global connections.

Mr Wedlock says “China Airlines is a great partner in the region with these services not only delivering great connections to Taipei and the airlines extensive global network but importantly building the SkyTeam presence on the Auckland hub enabling further code share traffic across key markets such as China, Korea, Europe and the Americas. Equally as one of the world’s largest cargo airlines the China Airlines services help us open greater access for our key trade markets.”

China Airlines joined the SkyTeam Alliance in 2011, and is the largest airline in Taiwan and the flag carrier of the Republic of China, with a four star rating from Skytrax. They fly to over 111 destinations in Asia, Europe, North America and Oceania, and have a strong network presence in the Southeast Asia, East Asia, and Northeast Asia.

As part of its Ambition 2020 initiative, Auckland Airport also launched a new high-profile traveller campaign to grow inbound tourism from Taiwan – a strategically important and relatively untapped growth market for the New Zealand tourism sector.

The first Taiwanese celebrity guests, television news anchor HaiYin Chen and her renowned architect husband Lienchuan Yu, completed an eight-day tour of New Zealand in June which included the Queenstown Winter Festival.

The Taiwan campaign follows the announcement of trade pact talks with New Zealand later this year – vitally important as Taiwan is our largest butter importer, fourth largest fresh fruit importer and eighth largest export market.

Mr Wedlock says the campaign, and HaiYin, a lead anchor for ETTV Taiwan’s Eastern Evening News in particular, are of significant value as brand ambassadors to our country as they use their enormous social media presence to share the New Zealand experience with their fan-bases back home.

“Bringing HaiYin and Lienchuan here and showing them, and their fans back in Taiwan, what New Zealand has to offer is part of our successful strategy to promote local tourism destinations and develop our nation’s reputation as a must-visit travel destination,” says Mr Wedlock.

“HaiYin has drawn in more than 25,600,000 visitors to her online blog posts alone, a massive following we’re hoping to tap into to grow tourism from Taiwan.”

HaiYin made regular updates and shared her views of our country with her fans at home as she toured New Zealand and visited top tourism locations in Auckland, the central North Island and lower South Island.

Her husband Lienchuan Yu, who holds a Masters of Architecture from Cornell University, USA, and was recently highlighted for his work on their own home – being named one of Taiwan's Top 20 Residential Designs.

Auckland Airport is focused on creating more quality products to offer the Taiwan market. Auckland Airport believes that, as with many other expanding tourism markets in Asia, additional inbound capacity will stimulate and drive significant visitor growth. The 2009 introduction of a Visa Free programme has been another key factor, with an immediate and positive impact on visitor numbers.
Direct air-links are critical for the facilitation and growth of trade, particularly as tourism is a strong precursor for trade activity and nearly all high-value air-freight is carried in the belly-hold of passenger aircraft.

Ends

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