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China Airlines to Join SkyTeam

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China Airlines has begun the joining process which should lead to its full entry into the SkyTeam Airline Alliance by mid-2011.

Headquartered in Taipei, China Airlines is one of the largest airlines in Taiwan, home to one of the world’s most dynamic technology-driven economies that also possesses abundant tourism opportunities and booming aviation industry prospects.

During an official ceremony in Taipei, China Airlines’ President Huang-Hsiang Sun, joined the CEOs and representatives of SkyTeam member airlines in signing an Adherence Agreement, thus formally starting the process of China Airlines joining SkyTeam. The signing ceremony took place at National Concert Hall in Taipei, witnessed by Chairman of the SkyTeam Governing Board Leo van Wijk, and Chairman Liu Shaoyong of future member China Eastern.

“The inclusion of China Airlines in our network will solidify SkyTeam’s unrivalled presence in the Greater China market, a region that continues to experience significant economic growth,” said Chairman of the SkyTeam Governing Board, Leo van Wijk. “In addition to the services provided by our existing members, China Airlines offers an extensive cross-strait operation, linking Taiwan to multiple major destinations in China. Also, Taipei will serve as an alternative Asian hub with services to and from key business destinations in the region.”

Managing Director of SkyTeam Marie-Joseph Malé, said, “We are honored and delighted to welcome China Airlines in our midst. We now enter a phase where China Airlines will work closely together with the current members to establish bilateral agreements and fulfill the more than 100 membership requirements. We rely in particular on our Asian members to use their advanced experience in the alliance to guide China Airlines in the joining process and expect our newest member to effectively join SkyTeam around mid-2011.”

The China Airlines network will complement those of Guangzhou-based China Southern and Shanghai-based China Eastern. Cooperation between these three SkyTeam family members will further consolidate SkyTeam’s strong position in Greater China.

SkyTeam will greatly benefit from expanding its regional network in the region. Out of the 93 international routes, China Airlines will bring four new destinations to the network; Okinawa, Miyazaki, Surabaya and Palau.

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