CHINA: Air China gets government cash infusion

The Chinese government has approved a RMB1.5 billion capital injection into Air China, which will give a push to the air cargo joint venture with Cathay Pacific Airways. The Beijing-based carrier – China’s largest international carrier – will receive the funds from its controlling shareholder China National Aviation Holding Co. Air China will use the […]


The Chinese government has approved a RMB1.5 billion capital injection into Air China, which will give a push to the air cargo joint venture with Cathay Pacific Airways. The Beijing-based carrier – China’s largest international carrier – will receive the funds from its controlling shareholder China National Aviation Holding Co.

Air China will use the capital to acquire a minority interest in its cargo unit, Air China Cargo, the airline said in a statement. Launched in 2003, Air China Cargo initially had three shareholders, including Air China with a 51 per cent stake, CITIC Pacific Ltd with a 25 per cent stake and Capital Airports Holding Co with a 24 per cent share.

The carrier operates four Boeing 747- 200 freighters and eight B747-400 planes, and has since become a wholly owned unit of Air China after the airline bought out CITIC Pacific in January 2008 and Capital Airports in April 2009.

This latest move by the Chinese government makes it the third mainland carrier to receive a capital injection from the government: China Eastern Airlines received 9 billion yuan while China Southern Airlines received 3 billion yuan last year.