Japanese carrier All Nippon Airways (ANA) will begin operating direct flights between Tokyo Narita and Mexico City next year, starting February 15, making ANA the first airline to offer direct daily flights between Japan and Mexico. The return Mexico City-Tokyo Narita flight will begin operations from February 16.

The direct flight will be the longest in the carrier’s network and ANA has announced it will be deploying on the route its Boeing B787-8 in a two-class configuration, offering 46 business and 123 economy class seats.

“We are proud to be the first airline to operate direct daily flights between Japan and Mexico to better serve the growing business and leisure demand between our two countries,” said the airline’s CEO and president, Osamu Shinobe. “We hope our flight will also contribute to a closer bilateral relationship, economic prosperity and cultural exchange.”

The new route comes as economic ties between the two countries, in particular in the automotive industry, have been on the increase. Since 2010, direct investment in Mexico from Japan has increased by a factor of approximately 2.7 and the number of Japanese-owned companies setting up operations in Mexico has approximately doubled.

Despite economic difficulties, last month ANA announced it had achieved a 6.4 per cent increase in consolidated net income attributable to owners of parent company ANA Holdings in 2016 versus the same period in 2015, at a time when rival Japanese carrier Japan Airlines announced a 30 per cent net income decrease.

Details of the new Tokyo Narita-Mexico City route are as follows (all times local):

Flight No. From To Departs Arrives Days
NH180 Tokyo Narita Mexico City 1640 1355 Daily
NH179 Mexico City Toko Narita 0100 0635+1