PHILIPPINE Airlines AND ETIHAD ENDING PARTNERSHIP
The Centre for Aviation (CAPA) is suggesting that Philippine Airlines and Etihad might soon consider ending their partnership. The Manila-based carrier has been reported to not have benefitted significantly from its partnership with its Abu Dhabi-based counterpart.
Currently, both carriers have a codeshare agreement. Etihad has its own Flight numbers on domestic Flights operated by Philippine Airlines, while Philippine Airlines also has a Flight number on Etihad Flights between Manila and Abu Dhabi.
This suggestion comes as Philippine Airlines is considering a reduced presence in the Middle East in order to focus on expanding in other regions of the world . Philippine Airlines reestablished its presence in the Middle East in 2013 amidst an ambitious expansion plan rolled out under the ownership of San Miguel Corporation. In addition to Abu Dhabi, it has served cities such as Dubai, Riyadh, Doha, Dammam, and Jeddah. In that same period, the flag carrier also received new Airbus A330s, including a high-density version with only regular or premium economy class seats. This version was mostly utilised in the Middle East.
A loss of a codeshare agreement with Etihad may also provide renewed opportunities for other Middle Eastern carriers to resume codeshare agreements with Philippine Airlines. Previously, Emirates, Qatar Airways, and Gulf Air had codeshare agreements with Philippine Airlines.
CAPA specifically reports that Philippine Airlines is specifically considering new Flights in the United States and Europe, which will be priority regions once the Airbus A350 joins the carrier's fleet in 2018. CAPA is also expanding into Australia by making its Manila-Brisbane Flights completely nonstop, as well as into Chengdu, China. This is as the flag carrier improved its profitability in spite of its rapid expansion. Such a feat was one of the basis for Philippine Airlines winning the CAPA Asia Pacific 2016 Airline Turnaround of the Year Award.
In addition to Etihad, Philippine Airlines has existing codeshare agreements with Air Macau, All Nippon Airways, Cathay Pacific, China Airlines, Garuda Indonesia, Gulf Air, Hawaiian Airlines, Malaysia Airlines, Turkish Airlines, Vietnam Airlines, WestJet, and Xiamen Air.