ABU DHABI, United Arab Emirates, Dec. 16, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Etihad Airways, the national carrier of the United Arab Emirates and Lufthansa German Airlines, part of Europe's largest airline group, today announced the conclusion of a codeshare agreement. The arrangement is set to start in January 2017, subject to government approval.
The wet-lease agreement between Lufthansa Group and airberlin – in which Etihad Aviation Group indirectly holds a 29 per cent stake – was also announced today. Lufthansa's point-to-point carrier Eurowings and Austrian Airlines, a Lufthansa Group airline, have signed an agreement to wet lease 38 aircraft from airberlin. 33 of these aircraft are to be operated for the Eurowings Group, an additional five aircraft are to be flown for Austrian Airlines. The agreement has a term of six years and becomes effective from February 2017 subject to any regulatory requirements. The leases have been agreed at competitive rates.
Under the codeshare agreement, the German airline will place its 'LH' code on Etihad Airways' twice daily non-stop flights between its home base of Abu Dhabi and Frankfurt and its twice daily non-stop services between Abu Dhabi and Munich, the biggest city in southern Germany.
The UAE's national airline will, in turn, put its 'EY' code on Lufthansa's long-haul, non-stop intercontinental services between its home base of Frankfurt, the business and commercial capital of Germany, and Rio de Janeiro, Brazil as well as Bogota, Colombia.
James Hogan, President and Chief Executive Officer, Etihad Aviation Group, said:
"We have long seen Germany as a key strategic market for Etihad Aviation Group and this new relationship with Lufthansa marks the next step in our commitment to the leading European aviation group.
"Lufthansa is highly respected globally and I'm very pleased that we will work together in the future for the benefit of our customers.
"Additionally, we are, in our role as a minority shareholder in airberlin, fully supportive of the separate agreement reached today with the Lufthansa Group to wet lease 38 airberlin aircraft.
"It is very clear to us at Etihad Airways that Lufthansa is a like-minded, forward thinking organisation with which we can do strong, meaningful and mutually beneficial business."
Carsten Spohr, Chairman of the Board and CEO, Lufthansa Group, said:
"We are looking forward to partnering with the Etihad Aviation Group. The wet-lease contract with airberlin fosters the growth of our Eurowings Group. The codeshare agreement of Lufthansa and Etihad will offer our customers more benefits and complement both airlines' networks. We will consider extending our cooperation in other areas."
About Etihad Aviation Group
Etihad Aviation Group (EAG) is a diversified global aviation and travel group comprising four business divisions – Etihad Airways, the national airline of the United Arab Emirates, Etihad Airways Engineering, Hala Group and Airline Equity Partners. The group has minority investments in seven airlines: airberlin, Air Serbia, Air Seychelles, Alitalia, Jet Airways, Virgin Australia, and Swiss-based Darwin Airline, trading as Etihad Regional.
From its Abu Dhabi base, Etihad Airways flies to, or has announced plans to serve, more than 110 passenger and cargo destinations in the Middle East, Africa, Europe, Asia, Australia and the Americas. The airline has a fleet of over 120 Airbus and Boeing aircraft, with 204 aircraft on firm order, including 71 Boeing 787s, 25 Boeing 777Xs, 62 Airbus A350s and 10 Airbus A380s. For more information, please visit: etihad.com
About Lufthansa Group
Lufthansa is a global aviation group divided into the three strategic areas of Hub Airlines, Point-to-Point Business and Service Companies. The Group's network carriers, with their premium brands of Lufthansa, SWISS and Austrian Airlines, serve its home market from their Frankfurt, Munich, Zurich and Vienna hubs. With its Eurowings brand, the Group also offers short- and long-haul point-to-point services in the growing private travel market. And with its service companies, which are all global market leaders in their individual industries (e.g. Cargo, MRO, Catering), the Lufthansa Group has found success in further areas of the aviation business. The Lufthansa Group's airlines currently serve 255 destinations in 101 countries (i.e. as of winter 2016/2017). The Group's total fleet comprises some 600 aircraft; and its member airlines will be taking delivery of 214 new aircraft, including A350 and A321neos between now and 2025. For more information visit LH.com.
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SOURCE Etihad Airways