Qantas boss Alan Joyce says the airline remains "in negotiations with existing and potential partners" over the future of its proposed premium Asian-based airline, which industry wags have dubbed 'Qantasia' but is likely to be branded as RedQ or OneAsia.
The decision to establish the joint venture was first revealed by Joyce in August 2011, who pegged the future of Qantas on the increasingly affluent Asian region.
However, Joyce had no progress to report during a press conference held today in Sydney on the airline's half-yearly results.
"We are still in dialogue with our potential partners and existing partners" Joyce said. "Obviously those discussions are quite complex. It will take some time for us to come to conclusions on them."
Joyce has previously described the proposed new airline as "being competitive with Singapore Airlines, and the other premium carriers within Asia" with "same-day services to and within Asia."
Also still unknown is where the airline will hang its shiny new shingle, although Kuala Lumpur and Singapore are the prime candidates for the premium hub.
"We have a number of interesting opportunities" Joyce said earlier. "(We have) a good existing hub in Singapore with Jetstar operating out of there. And Kuala Lumpur with what [Air Asia boss] Tony Fernandes has done with [buying a big stake in] Malaysian Airlines; we want to talk to MAS and Air Asia about what that opportunity could look like."
Singapore is of course Qantas' traditional Asian base, from which it flies to Europe and which is in line for a new Marc Newson-designed Qantas First Lounge to replace the existing and rather lack-lustre lounge, while Kuala Lumpur is most notable for being the home of new Qantas chum and soon-to-be Oneworld partner Malaysia Airlines.
About David Flynn
David Flynn is the editor of Australian Business Traveller and a bit of a travel tragic with a weakness for good coffee, shopping and lychee martinis.