UK-China aviation: BA expands China Southern codeshare

Premium Analysis

British Airways and China Southern Airlines have signed an MoU to expand their codeshare agreement and implement reciprocal frequent flyer benefits. This throws the spotlight on the market between the UKEurope's largest aviation market – and China – the largest in Asia.

UK-China seat capacity is set to grow by 18% year-on-year in summer 2019 and will have doubled over five years. By contrast, BA's capacity will be down versus five years ago, following its withdrawal from Chengdu in 2017 (a route to be relaunched by Air China in Apr-2019)

The number of airlines operating UK-China is now nine, with four having entered since summer 2017. Air China has a significant capacity lead over BA, a lead that will be further extended by an additional daily frequency on London Heathrow-Beijing this summer. The number of routes will be 14 in summer 2019, up from five two years ago, while BA has reduced from three to two since 2017.

The wider agreement between BA and China Southern may not be a reliable signal of China Southern's intentions towards oneworld, following its decision to leave SkyTeam. However, it is a signal of the importance of China to BA and a reminder that BA has more to do in this market.

Become a CAPA Member to access Analysis Reports

This CAPA Premium Analysis Report is 1,731 words.
Become a CAPA Member

Our Analysis Reports are only available to CAPA Members. CAPA Membership provides exclusive access to in-depth insights on the latest developments in the aviation and travel industry, developed by our team of dedicated analysts located in Europe, North America, Asia and Australia.

Each report offers a fresh perspective on the latest industry trends and is available online or via the CAPA mobile app, with customisable alerts to help you stay informed and identify new business opportunities.

CAPA Membership also provides access to our full suite of tools, including a tailored selection of more than 1,000 News Briefs every week and comprehensive data and analysis on thousands of companies around the world.