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By no author15 March 2018
The addition of direct flights between Dublin and China opens up a whole world of new opportunities for Irish firms, according to business group Dublin Chamber.
The Chamber was responding to the news today that Chinese airline Hainan Airlines is to start direct flights from Dublin to Beijing from June 2018. The new service will run year-round.
The Chamber said that June will mark the beginning of an exciting new era for Irish/Asian business links, with Cathay Pacific also set to launch direct flights between Dublin and Hong Kong.
According to Dublin Chamber CEO, Mary Rose Burke: “The opening of a first direct route to China is excellent news for Irish business. In a world of increasing uncertainty, it is vital that companies diversify markets and seek to minimise risks. As we await clarity on how Britain's decision to leave the European Union will play out, it is important for companies to consider opportunities in new markets.
"Huge opportunities exist in Asia for Irish firms. These flights also show the value and potential that the Chinese see in the Irish market. With direct flights now in place between China and Hong Kong, a huge opportunity exists to drive two-way trade and investment links in the areas of fintech, education, technology, tourism and food and beverages," she added.
Dublin Chamber said it is seeing very strong interest currently from the Asian firms seeking to explore business opportunities in Ireland.
Ms Burke added: "The Chamber has experienced a major increase in the number of delegations from China over the past 18 months.
Since 2011, exports by Irish companies to China have shown massive year on year growth while visitors numbers from China are up every year. These flights will greatly help in facilitating this growth.’’