The premier of Victoria, Australia, the Hon. Daniel Andrews MP, was in Beijing for the announcement at Air China´s headquarters. He was welcomed by Vice President of Air China, Wang Ming Yuan,.
Relations between China and Australia have been strengthened with the signing of a Free Trade Agreement in November last year. CHAFTA will see a growth in cooperation and exchange between the two countries in government relations, trade, business and cultural activities. Over the course of 2015, Air China will increase its capacity from Melbourne by 60 percent, the largest increase in a single year since Air China first entered the Australian market 30 years ago.
Air China announced that a daily direct service between Beijing and Melbourne will commence on October 25th, 2015. Air China is the only carrier to offer a direct service between Melbourne and Beijing.
Air China is China´s only national flag carrier and a member carrier of the world´s largest airline network – Star Alliance. By Aug 2015, Air China had a fleet of 523 passenger aircraft and freighters of mainly Boeing and Airbus families (including those of the carriers which Air China has a majority stake in). It operates 350 routes, including 87international routes, 16regional routes and 247 domestic routes. It serves 168 cities in 35 countries and regions, including 58 international cities, 4 regional cities and 106 domestic cities. Every week, Air China offers over 1.47 million seats on over 7700 flights per week.