AirAsia is in talks with a potential partner to open an airline serving Myanmar, in a move that would help the low-cost carrier cover up to 95 per cent of the Southeast Asian travel market.
The group chief executive Tony Fernandes, in an interview to Reuters, said he also expected AirAsia’s Vietnam joint venture to be flying by October.
Currently AirAsia’s business network is acorss Malaysia, India, Indonesia, the Philippines, Japan and Thailand. There are also plans to launch an airline in China.
“Once you’ve covered Vietnam and Myanmar, you’ve got all the big (Southeast Asian) populations,” Fernandes said. “Vietnam – we’re talking about October, we’ve had great support from the Vietnam government and we have a great partner. My team are very bullish. It’s not going to be a big airline there (Myanmar), because the airport infrastructure is not there. But it is 50 million people and it will develop over time,” said Fernandes, who was in Sydney over the weekend for the Asean-Australia special summit.
“We had a good meeting with someone in Sydney – he’s got a good airline that we’ve known for a long time and he is a well-respected guy. We’re going through that process,” he was quoted in a report.
He did not name the potential partner.