Former EVA Air chairman plans StarLux Airlines. Taiwan does not need a third major airline

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EVA Air chairman Chang Kuo-wei was piloting a company aircraft in Mar-2016 when siblings removed him as chairman, following an inheritance dispute after the death of their father. In response, in 2019 Mr Chang intends to launch a new airline for Taiwan, StarLux Airlines, which will compete directly with EVA Air. Mr Chang is planning for widebody aircraft, and making StarLux the "Emirates of Taiwan".

The ready-made drama-revenge story has been eagerly snapped up by the media, which have noted that Mr Chang may invest up to USD200 million. While a large amount, that is small change for an airline, especially one that aims to amass a scale in the Asia-North America transfer market that requires significant aircraft and thus, capital, even if with leased aircraft.

Taiwanese regulators are changing policies so StarLux can launch, but Taiwan does not need a third major airline. It is not clear whether Mr Chang is serious, or creating an elaborate platform to regain his EVA job - arguably a better outcome, including for Taiwan's airline system.

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