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AirAsia adds another feather in its hat by winning the Air Transport News (ATN) ‘2013 Low Cost Airline of the Year’ award, at the 2013 ATN Awards Ceremony held at the Hilton Bonaventure in Montreal, Canada yesterday.

The ATN Awards, in its second consecutive year, established a reputation as a major distinction for leading companies and personalities in the air transport industry. The ‘Low Cost Airline of the Year’ award, won by AirAsia, is one of the newly established categories for 2013 and the airline was the first to assume the honour. AirAsia Group Head of Customer Experience, Zaman Ahmad, accepted the award on behalf of the airline.

AirAsia Group CEO Tony Fernandes said, “We are greatly honoured to be presented the 2013 Air Transport News ‘Low Cost Airline of the Year’ award, one of the aviation industry’s prestigious honours. Our never-ending dedication in providing premium services with low fares, constant innovations and matchless synergy of our short-haul and long-haul networks have greatly contributed to our success as the best low cost airline in the world.

It is simply amazing to think that 11 years ago we only had 2 old planes in operation, and now we are operating 120 planes in five countries and continue to be the most profitable airline, despite volatile economic conditions. Thank you for the great honour bestowed upon us. We are deeply flattered and this award is truly a great start to 2013.” AirAsia was shortlisted as one of the finalists in the ‘Low Cost Airline of the Year’ category by votes from ATN readers. AirAsia pipped the other finalists for the award through final judgment by a highly experienced jury panel.

The panel of adjudicators consisted of international industry experts, which included Dr. Andreas Papatheodorou (Managing Director, DATTEA Consulting), Bob Aaronson (ex-Director, General ACI), Dr. Pierre Coutu (Program Executive, AMPAP & President ASI), David Feldman (Managing Partner, Exambela Consulting), Antonis Simigdalas (Past President, European Regions Airline Association), Ulrich Shulte-Strathaus (ex-Secretary General, AEA) and Chris Tarry (CTAIRA).

Managing Director of Air Transport News, Dr Kostas Iatrou said, “ATN Awards have already become an important event in the air transport industry with an exposure to the whole world. Also ATN Awards are the only international prizes that award all the main categories of the air transport industry. It is important to recognize and honor the best of the best both personalities and companies of the commercial aviation that helped the industry to move forward.”

All six of AirAsia Group’s airlines in Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand, Philippines and Japan operate one of the youngest fleet of Airbus A320 in the world. Apart from a modern fleet, the airline presents unbeatable low fares, extensive route network, great flight frequencies, convenient booking and payment channels and value added add-ons such as meals, seat allocations and baggage allowances.

The airline is also known for its innovations, popularizing technology-backed travel services such as web and mobile bookings; web, mobile and kiosk check-in services; and the use of advanced communication channels and popular social media platforms in engaging with guests in real-time, throughout the globe.

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Hong Kong-based China Aircraft Leasing Company (CALC) has announced its selection of CFM56-5B engines to power 25 new Airbus A320 family aircraft. The firm engine order is valued at $500 million U.S. at list price and deliveries are scheduled between 2014 and 2016.

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AgustaWestland, a Finmeccanica company, and Kanematsu Corporation are pleased to announce they have been awarded a contract by the Japan National Police Agency (JNPA) to supply a GrandNew law enforcement light twin helicopter which will be operated in Kawagawa prefecture located in the southern Kantō region of Japan.

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AgustaWestland, a Finmeccanica company, and Mitsui Bussan Aerospace are pleased to announce they have been awarded a contract by the Japan National Police Agency (JNPA) to supply two AW139 twin engine helicopters which will be operated in Hokkaido and Fukushima prefectures. This latest order brings the number of AW139 helicopters ordered by customers in Japan to more than 40.

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Air China will increase its Beijing-Moscow service CA909/10 by two flights a week to daily starting March 31. The outbound flight departs from Beijing at 13:45 local time, while the return flight departs from Moscow at 19:45 local time. The total flight time is 11 hours and 30 minutes. The flights will be operated with the newly revamped B777-200.

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Boeing (NYSE: BA) and Cathay Pacific Airways today announced an order for three 747-8 Freighter airplanes. The order, valued at approximately $1 billion at list prices, also includes options for five additional 777 Freighters. The new additions will bolster Cathay Pacific's 747-8 Freighter fleet to 13 airplanes.

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Boeing [NYSE: BA] announced today that Air China has agreed to buy two Boeing 747-8 Intercontinentals, one 777-300ER (Extended Range) and 20 Next-Generation 737-800s. In addition, Air China Cargo, a subsidiary of Air China, has agreed to buy eight 777 Freighters. The airline plans to expand its capacity to meet growing demand in Asia-Pacific and China, the most dynamic market for commercial airplanes.

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With raising the notches one class above for all four cabin services and starting to introduce fully flat seat to business class through the significant improvements in spaciousness and functionality of seats, JAL has decided to configure SKY SUITE 777(Boeing 777-300ER aircraft) from early May 2013 on the long-haul route between Tokyo (Narita) and New York (John F. Kennedy) after it was deployed on Narita = London route from January 2013.

 

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The 11th Routes Asia event will take place on 17-19 March in Mumbai, India. With over 600 delegates representing 300 airlines and airports from across the region, the event is expected to match or even surpass last year's record total. Routes Asia is the only annual event designed to facilitate meetings between senior airport executives and airline route decision makers as well as tourism authorities from the entire Asia region.

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Airbus and Thai Airways International (THAI) have signed an agreement for Maintenance Training Collaboration to develop a long term strategic partnership. As part of this, THAI would become Airbus' local maintenance training centre in the region and will initially provide maintenance type-training capabilities for A320 and A330.

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