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AirAsia group eyes flights to Myanmar

MANILA, Philippines - Low cost carrier Air Asia Inc. (Philippines’ AirAsia) and unit AirAsia Zest (formerly Zest Airways Inc.) are looking at mounting flights to Myanmar as part of the continued expansion of their routes.

Based on its application with the Civil Aeronautics Board (CAB), AirAsia is seeking the allocation of entitlements of 1,260 seats between Manila and Yangon as well as 1,260 weekly seats on points except Manila and Myanmar.

On the other hand, AirAsia Zest is seeking the allocation of entitlements for seven weekly flights between Manila and Yangon.

AirAsia is 40 percent owned by AirAsia Berhad of Malaysia while the 60 percent is owned by Marianne Hontiveros, Antonio Cojunagco Jr., Dr. Michael Romero, and Ambassador Alfredo Yao.

Philippines’ AirAsia Philippines is in the process of further increasing its 49-percent stake in AirAsia Zest to at least a controlling stake of 51 percent.

In March last year, Philippines’ AirAsia Philippines and ZestAir entered into a strategic alliance agreement. This paved the way for the completion of a transaction wherein Philippines’ AirAsia Philippines acquired an 85-percent economic interest and 49-percent voting rights in ZestAir as well as a 100-percent interest in Yao’s Asiawide Airways Inc.

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In exchange, Yao’s ZestAir got $16 million as well as 13-percent interest in Philippines’ AirAsia.

 Earlier,  budget airline Cebu Air Inc. (Cebu Pacific) and unit Tiger Airways Philippines sought the approval of CAB to mount flights to Myanmar.

 Cebu Pacific is seeking 1,260 weekly seats for flights between Manila and Yangon while Tigerair Philippines also filed a separate application with the CAB seeking 1,260 weekly seats for the Manila – Yangon route.

Cebu Pacific and Tigerair Philippines filed their respective applications in accordance to the recently concluded Air Services Agreement entered into by the governments of the Philippines and Myanmar.

CAB executive director Carmelo Arcilla earlier said Philippines and Myanmar signed a new air pact updating the old agreement signed way back in 1979 and allowing the designated airlines of each country a total of 3,780 seats per week or about three flights per day for each country between Manila and points in Myanmar.



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