BEIJING — All Nippon Airways Co. and Air China said here Thursday they have agreed to share flight codes starting March 28 to meet growing demand for passenger and cargo transportation between Japan and China.
The code-sharing arrangement, ANA’s first with a Chinese airline, will cover 105 weekly flights between Tokyo or Osaka and Beijing, Shanghai and Hangzhou.
“Air China is one of the biggest airlines in China and has a broad experience in flight services,” ANA President Yoji Ohashi told a news conference at a Beijing hotel. “We are planning to further expand our partnership to other routes.”
Japan’s second-largest carrier said it hopes to get a strong foothold in the rapidly expanding Chinese market to catch up with rival Japan Airlines System Corp., the holding company of Japan Airlines Co. and Japan Air System Co.
Under the agreement, the two carriers will allow passengers to accrue mileage on code-shared flights and redeem it on any flight on both networks.
The code-share alliance is part of Air China’s strategy to expand its global network, Air China President Li Jiaxiang told the same news conference. The carrier code-shares with more than 60 airlines worldwide, including Lufthansa and United Airlines, which are key carriers in Star Alliance.
ANA currently operates 102 international flights weekly between Japan and China, rising to 112 in March. Air China operates 88 flights between the two countries.
ANA especially wants to promote flights to Hangzhou, south of Shanghai, by using ANA Sales & Tours Co., its group travel agency.