Etihad Airways has commenced its new schedule of daily flights between Abu Dhabi and Brisbane via Singapore.

To mark the occasion Etihad Airways operated ‘Blue Moon Rising’ – its Airbus A330-200 painted in Manchester City Football Club colours – on the commemorative February 1 flight.

James Hogan, President and Chief Executive Officer of Etihad Airways, said the new daily service would add an extra 1048 seats a week to the Abu Dhabi-Singapore-Brisbane route.

“The additional capacity puts Etihad Airways in a stronger than ever position in the Singapore and Australian markets. It enables us to compete on a more level playing field than in the past,” he said

“Daily flights – combined with a world-leading guest experience, access to more destinations worldwide than any other Middle Eastern airline, and seamless connections in Abu Dhabi and to Virgin Australia services in Brisbane – deliver our Australian and Singaporean guests a winning proposition.

“The new schedule also offers more to the thousands of business and leisure travellers, particularly from the Middle East, UK, Ireland and Europe, who are heading to Singapore and the state of Queensland in ever-increasing numbers.”

Hogan said the airline was working closely with government and industry stakeholders in each market to ensure the route’s continuing success.

“In Queensland, for example, we have just signed a new marketing agreement with Tourism and Events Queensland to encourage more visitors from the Middle East, UK and Europe to holiday in the Sunshine State,” he said.

Etihad Airways commenced three weekly flights to Brisbane and Singapore on September 28, 2007. The Queensland capital was the airline’s second destination in Australia and the 43rd in its global network.

The airline operates its state-of-the-art Airbus A330-200 aircraft on the Abu Dhabi-Singapore-Brisbane route. The aircraft is configured in two classes with 22 seats in Pearl Business Class and 240 seats in Coral Economy Class.

The Abu Dhabi-headquartered airline has close ties with the Queensland Government and its agency, Tourism and Events Queensland. It has supported major marketing initiatives such as the Million Dollar Memo, and in 2011 donated $1 million to the Queensland Flood Appeal. The same year its shareholder, the Emirate of Abu Dhabi, donated $30 million to the Government of Queensland to build five category five cyclone shelters for use as multi-purpose centres year round.