Shanghai, June 1, 2002—The Chief Executive Board of Star Alliance, assembled in Shanghai in The Peopleå‘s Republic of China for its ordinary semi-annual CEB meeting, today approved the addition of three new members to the global airline group.
Work will commence immediately on the integration of Asiana Airlines of South Korea, LOT Polish Airlines and Spanair of Spain into Star Alliance.
No official date has yet been set for the official entry into Star Alliance of the new member airlines. It is anticipated, however, that they will all become part of ?the airline network for Earth” within the next six to 12 months.
?We are proud that Asiana, LOT and Spanair have chosen to join Star Alliance,” the Chief Executive Board said in a statement. ?They will add further strength and quality to our worldwide route network by increasing its global reach and thereby its customer value. With the addition of Asiana, LOT and Spanair we have taken another important step in the development of Star Alliance as the world’s premiere airline alliance,” the chief executives added.
?Asiana is excited to join Star Alliance, the leading airline alliance that will continue to shed new meaning and light on the airline business,” said Chan Bup Park, President and Chief Operating Officer of Asiana. ?By working closely with Star Alliance members in the Northeast and Southeast Asian markets Asiana will become a great asset to the alliance, providing an extended network that will significantly benefit customers and Star Alliance.”
Jan Litwinski, President and CEO of LOT said, ?We are extremely happy that the Star Alliance Chief Executive Board today accepted our application for membership in this truly global airline network. I am convinced that the values LOT will bring to Star Alliance will benefit customers as well as the member carriers. Our membership in Star Alliance will connect Poland with the world and the world with Poland.”
?We are delighted to further our valued airline partnerships by joining Star Alliance,” said Gonzalo Pascual, President and Chairman of the Board of Spanair.
?After many years of successful cooperation with some of the world’s most prestigious airlines - all founding and current members of Star Alliance - we look forward to providing travelers in Spain with the enhanced recognition, benefits and global access they deserve. Today’s decision by the Star Alliance Chief Executive Board is an important milestone for Spanair that has been enthusiastically awaited by our customers, employees and shareholders as we complete the remaining steps to fulfill our role as Star Alliance’s member in Southern Europe,” Pascual said.
Asiana Airlines was established in 1988. It serves 61 destinations in 15 countries, including 14 cities in China, out of Seoul with a modern fleet of 64 aircraft. Asiana carried 12 million passengers last year. The airline employs more than 8,000 people.
LOT Polish Airlines can look back upon a history that started in 1929. The airline serves 12 domestic and 49 international destinations out of Warsaw with a fleet of 51 aircraft. Some 3.2 million passengers were carried in 2001. LOT Polish Airlines has 4,355 employees.
Spanair was set up in 1986 as a joint venture between Star Alliance member SAS Scandinavian Airlines and Teinver SA of Spain. The airline operates services to 25 destinations in mainland Spain, the Balearic and Canary Islands as well as internationally with a fleet of 49 aircraft. More than eight million passengers were carried by Spanair in 2001. The airline has 2,750 employees.
Star Alliance was established in May, 1997 as the first truly global airline alliance. The member airlines are Air Canada, Air New Zealand, All Nippon Airways - ANA, Austrian Airlines, bmi british midland, Lauda Air, Lufthansa German Airlines, Mexicana Airlines, SAS Scandinavian Airlines, Singapore Airlines, Thai Airways International, Tyrolean Airways, United Airlines and VARIG Brazilian Airlines. The Star Alliance network serves 729 airports in 124 countries.