The Allan Labor Government has partnered with Air India to bring a new flight route from India’s second largest city into Melbourne, bringing more visitors and students to the state, increase investment opportunities and create hundreds of local jobs .
Minister for Jobs and Industry Natalie Hutchins announced Air India will start non-stop flights from Mumbai to Melbourne from December 2023, operating three times a week and adding 40,000 seats per year into Victoria.
It’s the first time in more than 40 years an airline has provided a non-stop service between Mumbai and Australia. Backed by the Labor Government and Melbourne Airport, the Air India flights will generate $55 million for the Victorian economy each year and create an estimated 264 jobs in the aviation and tourism sectors.
Air India is India’s national carrier and already operates a service from New Delhi to Melbourne seven times a week. The new flight route will create more connections between Victoria and India, which is set to become the world’s third largest economy by 2030.
Victoria is already a major tourism destination for India, and the direct flights will enable even more people to visit. Last year, 149,000 people from India travelled to Victoria.
Victoria is also a key study destination for Indian students, with around 53,000 international students enrolled in Victorian institutions in 2022.
Exporters will also benefit from the new flights, adding more than 1,800 tonnes of annual air freight from Victoria to Mumbai – a major financial centre and cargo hub. India is already a fast-growing export market, with 368 tonnes of goods valued at $33 million being exported by air freight to India last financial year.
Air India joins a growing list of international airlines the Labor Government has supported to increase flights to Melbourne including recent expansions by LATAM Airways, Cathay Pacific, Scoot, China Southern and Sichuan Airlines.