Air New Zealand and Singapore Airlines have received the regulatory approval needed to start an alliance that will boost the capacity between each airline's country by up to 30 per cent.
New Zealand's Minister of Transport today approved the proposed alliance; the Competition Commission of Singapore had already given its approval.
The Star Alliance member airlines first announced the deal earlier this year (see news, January 16).
It will enable ANZ to fly the Auckland-Singapore route again and SIA to operate an A380 to New Zealand for the first time.
SIA's A380 will be operated daily between Singapore and Auckland, replacing an existing daily service with a B777-300ER.
ANZ, meanwhile, will launch daily services between Auckland and Singapore using newly refitted B777-200ER aircraft, taking over five flights currently operated by SIA and adding two more weekly flights, increasing the frequency to daily.
SIA's daily service between Singapore and Christchurch will continue under the alliance.
Air New Zealand's "NZ" code was last on SIA's network in 2007, while ANZ last flew to Singapore in 2006.
The carriers estimate that their alliance could increase their existing capacity by up to 30 per cent each year.
ANZ passengers will be able to access codeshare travel on SIA's network to the UK, Europe, Africa and south-east Asia, as well as on the network of its regional subsidiary airline, Silk Air.
SIA passengers will be allowed to codeshare travel across the ANZ domestic network and to selected international destinations.