Qantas Group has unveiled a joint venture with China Eastern Airlines to launch Jetstar Hong Kong, which will cater to the growing low-cost travel market in Asia, particularly in China.
The new carrier will “service short-haul routes in Asia, including Greater China, Japan, South Korea and Southeast Asia” and is expected to begin services by 2013, subject to regulatory approval.
Jetstar Hong Kong will launch with an initial fleet of three Airbus A320s before expanding to 18 aircraft by 2015.
Qantas said that the new carrier will be consistent with the Jetstar business model and offer fares that are “50 per cent less than existing full-service carriers”.
Bruce Buchanan, Jetstar’s chief executive, said: “This is a unique opportunity to capitalise on the enormous potential of the greater Chinese market, where the penetration rate of low cost carriers is less than five percent.”