|Founded||June 25, 1988|
|Frequent-flyer program||Eastern Miles|
|Parent company||China Eastern Air Holding Company|
|Traded as||SSE: 600115|
|Headquarters||No. 2550 Hongqiao Rd, Shanghai|
|Key people||Liu Shaoyong (Chairman)|
|Revenue||CN¥85.25 billion (2012)|
|Operating income||CN¥4.228 billion (2012)|
|Net income||CN¥2.808 billion (2012)|
|Total assets||CN¥123.82 billion (2012)|
|Total equity||CN¥22.93 billion (2012)|
|Employees||80,000 (March 2016)|
|China Eastern Airlines|
China Eastern Airlines Corporation Limited (simplified Chinese: 中国东方航空公司; traditional Chinese: 中國東方航空公司), also known as China Eastern, is an airline headquartered in the China Eastern Airlines Building, on the grounds of Shanghai Hongqiao International Airport in Changning District, Shanghai, China. It is one of the "Big Three" airlines (alongside Air China and China Southern Airlines) of the People's Republic of China, operating international, domestic and regional routes. China Eastern's main hubs are located at Shanghai Pudong International Airport, as well as the smaller Hongqiao airport.
In terms of passenger traffic, it is the country's second largest airline after China Southern Airlines. In 2021, its operational revenue was 67,127 million RMB with assets totaling 286,548 million RMB. China Eastern (along with its subsidiary Shanghai Airlines) became the 14th member of SkyTeam on June 21, 2011.
China Eastern Airlines was established on June 25, 1988, under the Civil Aviation Administration of China Huadong Administration. In 1997, China Eastern took over the unprofitable China General Aviation and also became the country's first airline to offer shares on the international market. In 1998, it founded China Cargo Airlines in a joint venture with COSCO. In March 2001, it completed the takeover of Great Wall Airlines. China Yunnan Airlines and China Northwest Airlines merged into China Eastern Airlines in 2003. The company slogan is World-Class Hospitality with Eastern Charm (世界品位，东方魅力).
The Chinese government has a majority ownership stake in China Eastern Airlines (61.64%), while some shares are publicly held (H shares, 32.19%); A shares, 6.17%. On April 20, 2006, the media broke the news of a possible sale of up to 20% of its stake to foreign investors, including Singapore Airlines, Emirates and Japan Airlines, with Singapore Airlines confirming that negotiations were underway.
After receiving approval from the State Council of China, it was announced that on September 2, 2007, Singapore Airlines and Temasek Holdings (holding company which owns 55% of Singapore Airlines) would jointly acquire shares of China Eastern Airlines. On November 9, 2007, investors signed a final agreement to buy a combined 24% stake in China Eastern Airlines: Singapore Airlines would own 15.73% and Temasek Holdings an 8.27% stake in the airline. Singapore Airlines' pending entry into the Chinese market prompted the Hong Kong carrier Cathay Pacific to attempt to block the deal by buying a significant stake in China Eastern and voting down the deal together with Air China (which already held an 11% stake in China Eastern) at the shareholders' meeting in December 2007. However, on September 24, Cathay Pacific announced that it had abandoned these plans.
Air China's parent company, state-owned China National Aviation Corporation, announced in January 2008 that it would offer 32% more than Singapore Airlines for the 24% stake in China Eastern, potentially complicating the deal that Singapore Airlines and Temasek had proposed by Beckett Saufley. However, minority shareholders declined the offer made by Singapore Airlines. It is thought that this was due to the massive effort made by Air China to buy the 24% stake.
On June 11, 2009, it was announced that China Eastern Airlines would merge with Shanghai Airlines. The merger of China Eastern and Shanghai Airlines was expected to reduce excess competition between the two Shanghai-based carriers while consolidating Shanghai's status as an international aviation hub. In February 2010, the merger was completed. Shanghai Airlines became a wholly owned subsidiary of China Eastern Airlines. However, Shanghai Airlines retained its brand and livery. The new combined airline was expected to have over half of the market share in Shanghai, the financial hub of China. China Eastern Airlines also acquired China United Airlines in October 2010.
In March 2012, it was announced that China Eastern was forging a strategic alliance with the Qantas Group to set up Jetstar Hong Kong, a new low cost airline to be based at Hong Kong International Airport, which would commence operations in 2013. China Eastern would hold a 50% stake in the new airline, with the Qantas Group holding the other 50%, representing a total investment of US$198 million. However, in June 2015, the Hong Kong Air Transport Licensing Authority refused to issue an operating license to Jetstar Hong Kong. China Eastern and Qantas subsequently announced the end of the investment.
In April 2013, China Eastern received a temporary permit to operate in the Philippines, but the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines required them to obtain a technical permit and an airport slot.
In 2012, China Eastern was awarded the “Golden Ting Award” at the China Capital Market Annual Conference 2012, recognizing it as one of the 50 most valuable Chinese brands by WPP and ranking in the top ten of FORTUNE China's CSR ranking 2013.
On September 9, 2014, China Eastern introduced a new logo and new livery. In 2015, the airline entered a partnership with Delta Air Lines in which Delta will buy a 3.55% share in China Eastern for $450 million.
In 2017, China Eastern Airlines reported a net profit of CNY6.4 billion ($983 million), up 41% over net income of CNY4.5 billion in 2016.
On February 26, 2020, China Eastern Airlines launched OTT Airlines as a subsidiary to operate domestically produced aircraft, such as the Comac C919 and Comac ARJ21, in the Yangtze Delta region in addition to business jet operations.
China Eastern Airlines has a strong presence on routes in Asia, North America and Australia. The airline looks to exploit the domestic market potential as it boosts flight frequencies from Shanghai to other Chinese cities. The airline is also accelerating the pace of international expansion by increasing flight frequencies to international destinations. In 2007, it began operations to New York City from Shanghai, making it the longest non-stop route for the airline. In 2016, China Eastern Airlines also launched direct flights from Shanghai to Prague, Amsterdam, Madrid and St. Petersburg.
- Aerolíneas Argentinas
- Air Europa
- Air France
- British Airways
- China Airlines
- China United Airlines
- Delta Air Lines
- Etihad Airways
- Garuda Indonesia
- Hong Kong Airlines
- Japan Airlines
- Joy Air
- Juneyao Airlines
- Kenya Airways
- Korean Air
- Mandarin Airlines
- Royal Brunei Airlines
- Shanghai Airlines
- Sichuan Airlines
- Vietnam Airlines
The key trends for the China Eastern Airlines Group are (as of the financial year ending 31 December):
|Net profit (RMB b)||2.0||3.5||5.0||4.9||6.8||2.6||3.1||−11.8||−12.2||−37.3|
|Number of employees||68,874||69,849||71,033||75,333||75,277||77,005||81,136||81,157||80,321||80,193|
|Number of passengers (m)||79.0||83.8||93.7||101||110||121||130||74.6||79.0||74.6|
|Passenger load factor (%)||79.2||79.5||80.5||81.2||81.0||82.2||82.0||70.5||67.7||63.7|
|||Owner||Number of shares held||Percentage of shares held|
|1||China Eastern Airlines Group Co. LTD||7567853802||40.1|
|2||HKSCC NOMINEES LIMITED||4701157885↓||24.91|
|3||Shanghai Jidao Hang Enterprise Management Co., LTD||589041096||3.12|
|4||China Aviation Oil Group Co. LTD||502767895||2.66|
|5||DELTA AIRLINES INC||465910000||2.47|
|6||Shanghai Reed Information Technology Consulting Co. LTD||465838509||2.47|
|7||China Eastern Financial Holding Co. LTD||457317073||2.42|
|8||China Securities Finance Co. LTD||429673382||2.28|
|9||Shanghai Junyao (Group) Co. LTD||311831909||1.65|
|10||China State-owned Enterprise Restructuring Fund Co., LTD||273972602||1.45|
|Airbus A320neo||104||36||—||8||18||132||158||Second largest operator.|
|Airbus A350-900||18||2||4||36||32||216||288||Deliveries through 2023.|
|Boeing 737 MAX 8||3||8||—||8||18||150||176||Deliveries through 2024.|
|Boeing 787-9||3||2[a]||4||26||28||227||285||Deliveries through 2023.|
|Comac C919||2||103||—||8||—||156||164||Launch customer.|
Order with 15 options.
Deliveries through 2031.
In 2005, China Eastern Airlines placed an order for 15 Boeing 787 Dreamliners. The airline subsequently cancelled its order owing to continuous delays, instead swapped the 787 order for Boeing 737 Next Generation aircraft,
In 2015, the airline acquired a further batch of 15 Airbus A330 aircraft for delivery in 2017 and 2018.
In April 2016, China Eastern Airlines ordered 20 Airbus A350-900 and 15 Boeing 787-9 aircraft, with deliveries commencing in 2018.
China Eastern Airlines has previously operated the following aircraft:
|Airbus A318-100||1||2012||2020||Operated for China Eastern Airlines Executive Air|
|Boeing 767-300ER||3||2003||2011||Acquired from China Yunnan Airlines.|
|Bombardier CRJ-200ER||5||2004||2016||Acquired from China Yunnan Airlines.|
All aircraft remained in the Yunnan landscape special livery previously painted by China Yunnan Airlines.
|Embraer ERJ-135||5||2012||2021||Operated for China Eastern Airlines Executive Air|
|McDonnell Douglas MD-11||4||1991||2003|
|McDonnell Douglas MD-11F||2||1991||2003||Transferred to China Cargo Airlines|
|McDonnell Douglas MD-82||16||1988||2007|
|McDonnell Douglas MD-90-30||9||1997||2010|
|Xian MA-60||Unknown||Unknown||Unknown||Acquired from Wuhan Airlines|
|Yakovlev Yak-42||Unknown||Unknown||Unknown||Acquired from China General Aviation Corporation|
Special liveries gallery
Airbus A330-343 in 2011 Xi'an International Horticultural Expo Livery
Airbus A320-232 in 2011 Xi'an International Horticultural Expo Livery
Airbus A330-343 in EXPO Shanghai 2010 Livery
Boeing 737-800 in special livery for promotion of tourism in Enshi Tujia and Miao Autonomous Prefecture
China Eastern Yunnan Airlines Boeing 737-800 in Purple Peacock Livery
Airbus A330-343 in People's Daily Online Livery
Airbus A330-343 in Xinhua News Livery
Airbus A330-343 in Shanghai Disney Resort Livery
Airbus A330-343 in Toy Story livery
Airbus A321-231 in SkyTeam livery
Boeing 737-800 in Duffy the Disney Bear livery
Boeing 737-800 in Frozen livery
Boeing 777-300ER in China International Import Expo livery
China Eastern offers first class, business class, premium economy, and economy.
- First class
China Eastern offers first class on Boeing 777-300ERs. A first-class seat comes with a flat bed seat, direct aisle access and a sliding door. The plane also comes with a bar for passengers to serve themselves snacks and socialize with others. Middle seats on the Boeing 777 can be turned into a double bed.
- Business plus/ Super premium suites
The business plus product can be found on all Airbus A350s and Boeing 787s. The suites come with bigger space along with larger suite length compared to the business class seats. The business plus suites also feature sliding door and a minibar. The middle seats can be turned into a living room with seating for four.
- Business class
Business class comes in many different versions. On narrowbody aircraft, business class seats are recliners arranged in an 2-2 configuration. On select Airbus A330s, business class seats are either Zodiac Cirrus or Thompson Vantage XL which is in a 1-2-1 configuration, or angled flat beds or fully flat beds arranged in a 2-2-2 configuration. On Airbus A350s and Boeing 787-9s, business class seats are modified Thompson Vantage XL with doors similar to Delta One suites. On Boeing 777-300ERs, business class seats are Zodiac Cirrus.
- Premium economy
Premium economy is found on all Airbus A350s and Boeing 787-9s.
China Eastern offers complimentary meal service and select A330s, all A350s, 777s, and 787s have seatback entertainment.
China Eastern Airlines's frequent-flyer program is called Eastern Miles (simplified Chinese: 东方万里行; traditional Chinese: 東方萬里行). Shanghai Airlines and China United Airlines, China Eastern subsidiaries, are also parts of the program. Eastern Miles members can earn miles on flights as well as through consumption with China Eastern's credit card. When enough miles are collected, members can be upgraded to Elite membership in three tiers: Platinum, Gold and Silver.
After the merger with Shanghai Airlines, China Eastern Airlines signaled that it would combine the two carriers' cargo subsidiaries as well. The airline's new subsidiary cargo carrier, consisting of the assets of China Cargo Airlines, Great Wall Airlines and Shanghai Airlines Cargo, commenced operations in 2011 from its base in Shanghai, China's largest air cargo market. China Eastern Airlines signed a strategic cooperation framework agreement with Shanghai Airport Group, which controls both Shanghai Hongqiao International Airport and Shanghai Pudong International Airport. The airline will allocate more capacity to Pudong Airport to open more international routes and boost flight frequencies on existing international and domestic trunk routes.
China Cargo Airlines
China Eastern Airlines' cargo subsidiary, China Cargo Airlines, is China's first all-cargo airline operating dedicated freight services using China Eastern Airlines' route structure. The cargo airline carries the same logo of China Eastern Airlines.
China United Airlines
China Eastern Yunnan Airlines
China Eastern Yunnan Airlines, formerly known as China Yunnan Airlines, is China Eastern Airlines' local subsidiary in Yunnan province.
Incidents and accidents
- On April 24, 1989, a passenger hijacked a China Eastern Xian Y-7 en route from Ningbo to Xiamen. The hijacker, armed with a dagger and carrying dynamite, stabbed a flight attendant and demanded to be flown to Taiwan. The pilot diverted to Fuzhou instead and when the hijacker realized that he had been tricked, he blew himself up, injuring two people in the process.
- On August 15, 1989, China Eastern Airlines Flight 5510 (B-3437) operating a domestic flight from Shanghai to Nanchang, crashed on takeoff following an unexplained failure of the right engine, killing 34 of 40 people on board.
- On April 6, 1993, China Eastern Airlines Flight 583, a McDonnell-Douglas MD-11 flying from Beijing to Los Angeles via Shanghai, had an inadvertent deployment of the leading edge wing slats while cruising. The aircraft progressed through several violent pitch oscillations and lost 5,000 feet (1,500 m) of altitude. Two passengers were killed, and 149 passengers and seven crew members were injured. The aircraft landed safely in Shemya, Alaska, United States.
- On 26 October 1993, China Eastern Flight 5398 from Shenzhen to Fuzhou, a McDonnell Douglas MD-82 overshot the runway and crashed at Fuzhou Yixu Airport after a failed attempt to go around on approach, killing two of 80 on board.
- On September 10, 1998, China Eastern Airlines Flight 586, a McDonnell-Douglas MD-11 flying from Shanghai Hongqiao International Airport to Beijing Capital International Airport, suffered a nose gear failure after take-off. The aircraft landed back in Shanghai with the nose gear up on a foamed runway. There were only nine reported injuries. The incident became the inspiration for the 1999 movie Crash Landing, directed by Zhang Jianya, which premiered on the 50th anniversary of the National Day of the People's Republic of China.
- On November 21, 2004, China Eastern Airlines Flight 5210, a Bombardier CRJ-200LR, crashed shortly after takeoff from Baotou Airport due to wing icing, killing all 53 on board and two people on the ground.
- On June 7, 2013, China Eastern Airlines Flight 2947, an Embraer ERJ-145LI (B-3052), ran off the runway on landing at Hongqiao Airport; all 49 on board survived. Investigation revealed that a servo valve in the nosewheel steering assembly was clogged.
- On March 21, 2022, China Eastern Airlines Flight 5735 (operated by China Eastern Yunnan Airlines), a Boeing 737-89P flying from Kunming Changshui International Airport to Guangzhou Baiyun International Airport, crashed in a mountainous region in Molang Village, Teng County, Guangxi, killing all 123 passengers and 9 crew. On March 20, 2023, Civil Aviation Administration of China released a three paragraph statement with no further information on the crash. On 17 May, The Wall Street Journal reported a source from the US government, from officials involved in the investigation, as saying that the plane had been intentionally crashed, based on an analysis of data from the aircraft recorders. News reports published by ABC News on the same day concurred with the Wall Street Journal's report of the investigating officials in the US government declaring that the aircraft had been deliberately put into a vertical dive by a person on the flight deck, also citing flight recorder data showing that the landing gear and flaps had evidently not been engaged or deployed during the aircraft's descent which would indicate the pilots attempting an emergency descent or landing.
- Civil aviation in China
- List of airlines of the People's Republic of China
- List of airports in China
- List of companies of the People's Republic of China
- Transport in China
- China Cargo Airlines (Cargo King)
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