Qantas vs Cathay Pacific in Jetstar Hong Kong stoush

Qantas vs Cathay Pacific in Jetstar Hong Kong stoush

Oneworld partners Qantas and Cathay Pacific are going head to head on the looming launch of Jetstar Hong Kong.

Qantas continues to walk the low-cost airline's latest offshoot towards a debut by the end of this year, but Cathay Pacific is lobbying the Hong Kong government to block the airline's launch by rejecting its mandatory application for an air operator's license.

Jetstar Hong Kong is a three-way partnership between Qantas, Shanghai-based China Eastern and Hong Kong business magnate and billionaire Stanley Ho, whose daughter Pansy Ho was last week named as chairperson of the Jetstar Hong Kong board.

The airline proposes to fly to China, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, the Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam from its base in Hong Kong.

Cathay Pacific sees Jetstar Hong Kong as a threat to both its mainline operations as well as undercutting regional subsidiary Dragonair.

However, Cathay Pacific has come under fire for hosting eight members of the Hong Kong Government on a six-day trip to France last week to take delivery of a new Airbus A330.

All eight members of the Legislative Council travelled with either a partner or a child with some taking Cathay-funded sidetrips to London and Frankfurt.

In a statement issued by Cathay Pacific, a spokesman insisted that there was no conflict of interest and the visit was intended to introduce its latest A330, while also providing briefings on the forthcoming Airbus A350s for which Cathay has placed an order of 46 jets with a list price of some A$11bn.

Read: Airbus A350 makes its first 'virtual flight'

In the wake of criticism levelled against the lawmakers, at least six will now donate the cost of their partners' airfares – estimated at around A$7,000 – to local charities.

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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.
 

12 comments

  • eugoose

    eugoose

    26 Aug, 2013 11:10 am

    I always thought OneWorld members go along better than the other alliances, but since Qantas' partnership with EK, dumping BA, and all the (sometimes unjustified) scorn thrown at Air Berlin, the members seem more and more like bitter rivals who are forced to get along.

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  • TheRealBabushka

    TheRealBabushka

    27 Aug, 2013 03:41 pm

    I think Tier 1 - core members of OW get on well together. It's just Qantas being too cool for school hanging out with the Emerati exchange student and pushing its retarted half sister Jetstar into the cheer leading squad.

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  • Waynec

    Waynec

    26 Aug, 2013 01:51 pm

    CX is probably being anti competitive in this case as they are going all out to block JQ from being established in HKG. They probably saw what happened to SQ, with its market share at its home base falling after all the low cost carriers started their SIN operations.

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  • kash

    kash

    26 Aug, 2013 04:12 pm

    well CX is arguing that they should be able to operate domestic flights in Aussie if Jetstat HK goes through

    CX would never be allowed to do that anyways and considering the CX relationship with the govt Jetstar HK most likely will not go through ( see how much they managed to delay it)

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  • moa999

    moa999

    26 Aug, 2013 07:18 pm

    CX is absolutely able to operate domestically in Australia, indeed until recently Tiger was 100% foreign owned... Mind you it needs to do it under an Aussie AOC, paying Aussie wages...

    Qantas will only hold 33% of Jetstar HK, balance being China Eastern and a company controlled by Stanley Ho (of Macau casino fame)

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  • kash

    kash

    26 Aug, 2013 08:19 pm

    hmm I always thought Singapore was an exception and only their companies were able to do so-I'm probably wrong

    anyways CX states that Hong Kong laws states that the principle base should be HK to get certification and is making the argument that Jetstar's principle hub is not HK

    Anyways if it were easy for foriegn airline to get certification Air Asia would be there by now- would not be surprised if Air China is doing some behind the scenes work with officials!!!

    sure Swire only owns 44% of Cathay but makes 100% of the decisions so "only hold 33%" is not insignificant at all

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  • Nic

    Nic

    26 Aug, 2013 09:25 pm

    I welcome the competition. CX fares are often way out of expectation. I bought a QF PE ticket for $500 cheaper than CX.

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  • kash

    kash

    27 Aug, 2013 05:19 am

    True CX fares are always higher even when there is competition though- I guess some people only fly CX regardless of price

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  • eugoose

    eugoose

    27 Aug, 2013 09:25 am

    A lot of HK residents are very loyal to CX.

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  • Waynec

    Waynec

    27 Aug, 2013 04:13 pm

    I agree that CX flights to HKG are not much cheaper than QF but CX often have discounts on the Kangaroo route to Europe where the prices are significantly lower than QF.

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  • Al Glidden

    AlG

    27 Aug, 2013 10:00 am

    A bit cheeky of Cathay Pacific to try and stop a low-cost competitor. Well of course they would, that's expected, but CX has had it a bit too good for a bit too long and as somebody who sees an increasing amount of travel to Asia in the next few years I'd welcome competition. I currently fly CX to Hong Kong and Dragonair into China and have no complaints about them except that the prices are on the high side and we all know that competition will sort this out, JQ-HK might even win a lot of my (self-funded) travel business.

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  • kash

    kash

    27 Aug, 2013 12:38 pm

    you should see what they did to Hong Kong airlines- last year they grounded HK airlines fleet by suddenyl stopping Engineering services for them

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23 May, 2019 01:16 am

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