Etihad Airways announced that it has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with China Southern Airlines to provide passengers with an enhanced travel experience.
The announcement came after Etihad launched its first flight to Beijing Daxing International Airport (PKX), which happens to be the hub of China Southern Airlines.
In October 2022, Etihad also started services to China Southern’s home hub at Guangzhou Baiyun International Airport (CAN).
Etihad said that the MOU will expand the current codeshare cooperation between the two airlines, extending global flight networks beyond the two carriers’ hubs, and provide passengers with a more valuable travel experience.
According to Etihad, the MOU also contains plans for mutual procurement opportunities across ground handling, cargo handling, bonded warehousing, catering, and maintenance, repair and overhaul in either Guangzhou, Beijing or Abu Dhabi.
“This MOU will serve as a platform for a stronger ongoing relationship between the two airlines. Etihad looks forward to working with China Southern Airlines to explore comprehensive and pragmatic ways in which the two carriers can work more closely together, to drive greater value through our unique strengths at Beijing Daxing International Airport and Guangzhou Baiyun International Airport and further extend the reach of our joint network . Advanced cooperation between the two airlines sends a very strong signal to the industry and brings further hope of recovery for the global aviation and travel markets,” Arik De, chief revenue officer of Etihad Airways said in a statement.
The UAE and China have been strengthening economic and bilateral trade relationships during previous years. In 2020, UAE rail operator Etihad Rail awarded Chinese state-owned China Railway Rolling Stock Corp (CRRC) with a contract to be the developer and operator of the UAE’s national rail network.
In November 2021, United States intelligence agencies discovered that China was “secretly building” what they suspected was a military facility at Abu Dhabi’s Khalifa port.