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AirAsia to Launch New Low Cost Airline in Philippines

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AirAsia, through its fully owned subsidiary AA International, has entered into a partnership agreement with Antonio O. Cojuangco Jr., Michael R Romero and Marianne B. Hontiveros to establish a low cost airline in the Philippines.

AirAsia will hold 40% equity in AirAsia Inc. through AirAsia International Limited, while the remaining 60% will be held in equal partnership by Antonio O. Cojuangco Jr., Michael R Romero and Marianne B. Hontiveros.

AirAsia’s Group CEO, Dato’ Sri Dr Tony Fernandes said, “We are proud to extend AirAsia’s successful low-cost business model to the Philippines and make it affordable for the average Filipino to travel domestically and regionally. The low cost airline will also offer greater access to affordable travel to the Philippines which will help the economic growth of the country as evident in other regions where AirAsia is currently serving.”

Speaking on behalf of the Filipino shareholders, Marianne Hontiveros said the setting up of AirAsia Philippines “will create healthy business competition and make air travel more affordable for Filipinos. We look forward to serving the Filipino people and to seeing local businesses benefit from the influx of more tourists ... The establishment of AirAsia Philippines will benefit various industries such as travel and tourism, hospitality, entertainment and retail. It will also help the Philippines achieve its Millennium Development goals by 2015.”

As part of the Joint-Venture agreement, AirAsia will provide technical, operational and commercial support on an arms length basis to AirAsia Inc to ensure commercial, operational, branding and service level uniformity throughout AirAsia’s operations.

The Joint Venture is expected to commence operations in the 3rd quarter of 2011 subject to obtaining the relevant approvals.

AirAsia has 140 routes in destinations across ASEAN, Hong Kong, Macau, China, India, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Australia. Through its low-cost long-haul affiliate AirAsia X, its guests are able to fly to even more destinations in Australia, India and China, and to Taiwan, Korea, Japan, New Zealand, Iran, the UK and France.

AirAsia Berhad started flights to the Philippines in April 2005. It currently operates two daily return flights that connect Clark to Kuala Lumpur and to Kota Kinabalu in Sabah.

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