The national airline of the United Arab Emirates, Etihad Airways, recently announced the expansion of codeshare agreement with Hong Kong Airlines to give air travellers enhanced connections between Australasia, Asia, the Middle East, Europe and North America.Both the airlines have obtained regulatory approval to codeshare on nine additional routes, bringing the total number of services in their codeshare agreement to 14.As per the expanded codeshare agreement, Hong Kong Airlines has placed its ‘HX’ code on Etihad Airways’ flights between Abu Dhabi and a number of the most-visited cities in Europe and North America, which includes Paris, Dusseldorf, Frankfurt, Manchester, Milan, Munich, New York and Zurich.Etihad Airways has placed its ‘EY’ code on scheduled flights of Hong Kong Airlines, between Hong Kong and Auckland in New Zealand.Kevin Knight, Chief Strategy and Planning Officer at Etihad Aviation Group, said, “Our codeshare agreement with Hong Kong Airlines was initiated in 2014 with a primary focus on enhanced connectivity between Asia and the Middle East. Ever since then, we have continuously reviewed opportunities to provide improved offerings and greater access to our customers in Hong Kong, Abu Dhabi and beyond.”“The expanded codeshare will drive commercial opportunities for both airlines, and more importantly unleash the true benefits of the partnership by offering business and leisure travellers enhanced connections and a more frequent service between Australasia, Asia, the Middle East, Europe and North America,” Knight added.Li Dianchun, Chief Commercial Officer of Hong Kong Airlines, said, “We are glad to strengthen the partnership with Etihad Airways through a codeshare expansion. There is an increasingly strong demand in Asia for travel to the GCC region, Europe and the Americas. On the other hand, the visitors from the GCC region and even Europe will also enjoy convenient connections via Hong Kong to Auckland, one of the most popular destinations in the southern hemisphere. We have no doubt the enhanced connectivity will provide a wider range of choices while experiencing the world-class services and products offered by both airlines.”Etihad Airways would increase the frequency of its Madrid service from four flights a week to daily from June 1, 2017, with Hong Kong Airlines also codesharing on the additional flight.