Vietnam's Vietjet Air plans to fly to Brisbane from Ho Chi Minh City from 2019, the carrier has confirmed.
The announcement was made on the eve of Routes Asia 2018 in Brisbane and followed the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between Brisbane Airport Corporation (BAC) and Madam Nguyen Thi Thuy Binh, Vietjet vice president at the Australia – ASEAN Summit.
BAC secured the services with Queensland Government support under the Attracting Aviation Investment Fund (AAIF), along with partner Tourism and Events Queensland (TEQ) and support from Trade and Investment Queensland (TIQ).
Julieanne Alroe, BAC chief executive and managing director, said travel between Queensland and Vietnam has been growing at an average 8 per cent per annum over the last five years, with the new services set to further stimulate the market.
“It makes perfect sense for Vietjet Air to choose Brisbane, Queensland as it very first Australian port for direct flights given Ho Chi Minh City is one of Brisbane’s top five markets without direct services," she stressed.
“The economic growth of Vietnam is impressive, with these new services facilitating further education, tourism, and investment and trade opportunities with Vietnam, not only benefiting Brisbane, but regional Queensland as well."
Nguyen Thi Thuy Binh, Vietjet vice president, added: “Vietjet has been well prepared with comfortable, high-quality and friendly services to expand its international flight network to top destinations, connecting Vietnam’s business and tourism hubs with Asia Pacific countries, including Australia.
“We are proud to be the pioneer airline to operate direct services from Vietnam to Brisbane, a dynamic business centre with friendly people, pleasant weather and living conditions that is very attractive for international travellers, especially those from Asia.
“Vietjet is committed to making a new and lively aviation wave by offering brand new and friendly services and safe flights, thus contributing to the development of tourism, investment and trade exchange between Vietnam and Australia."
The Vietnamese community is the seventh largest ethnic community in Brisbane with the Vietnamese student market the 11th largest education market in Queensland. Vietnam is Queensland’s ninth largest merchandise export destinations, moving from 24th position in 2012–13. Airfreight between Vietnam and Queensland has tripled in the last four years.
Vietjet Air launched operations in Vietnam at the end of 2011 and operates to 17 domestic ports, and more than 20 international ports including Bangkok, Hong Kong, Seoul, Taipei, China, and will commence Delhi services later this year.