Jetstar Hong Kong’s application rejected

Qantas Airways’ hopes of launching a new low-cost carrier in Hong Kong have been essentially quashed after waiting nearly two years for a decision, as the territory’s Air Transport Licensing Authority (ATLA) rejected on 25 June the application from Qantas to start a new budget airline – Jetstar Hong Kong – on the basis that the ultimate control of the airline would be in Australia and mainland China.


Jetstar Hong Kong’s application rejected


Qantas Airways’ hopes of launching a new low-cost carrier in Hong Kong have been essentially quashed after waiting nearly two years for a decision, as the territory’s Air Transport Licensing Authority (ATLA) rejected on 25 June the application from Qantas to start a new budget airline – Jetstar Hong Kong – on the basis that the ultimate control of the airline would be in Australia and mainland China.

Expressing disappointment at the decision, CEO of the Qantas Group Alan Joyce said: “This is as disappointing for the shareholders as it is for the travellers Simon Large that Jetstar Hong Kong planned to serve.

It’s the travelling public who have lost out, because the message from this decision is that Hong Kong appears closed to fresh aviation investment even when it is majority locally owned and controlled.

“At a time when aviation markets across Asia are opening up, Hong Kong is going in the opposite direction. Given the importance of aviation to global commerce, shutting the door to new competition can only serve the vested interests already installed in that market.”

Cathay Pacific and Hong Kong Airlines have been strenuously objecting to Jetstar’s application and a public inquiry on the issue was held in February.