Victoria has added to its already impressive air links to Asia, with Japan Airlines announcing it will commence daily direct flights between Melbourne and Tokyo.
In an announcement made by the Victorian Government on 29 May 2017, the new flight service – due to take off in September 2017 – will increase air freight capacity between Victoria and Japan, making it easier for local producers and businesses to export fresh food and beverages to the lucrative Japanese market.
Victoria shares a long and mutually beneficial economic partnership with Japan – the state's third largest trading partner, and the world's third largest national economy.
Since the Japan-Australia Economic Partnership Agreement (JAEPA) took force in 2015, Victorian businesses have been given preferential access to export their premium goods and services to Japan. In 2015-16, 70 per cent of Victoria's goods to Japan were food and fibre, worth A$985 million to the state's economy.
Almost 60,000 Japanese tourists visited Victoria, contributing A$141 million to our visitor economy in 2016.
The new flight service will open up even more opportunities for Victorian businesses, and President of Japan Airlines, Yoshiharu Ueki said he was pleased to "serve Melbourne, and continue supporting both nations from every possible aspect, such as business and tourism."