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Qatar Airways buys 9.6% stake in Cathay Pacific

Staff Writer |
Qatar Airways is buying a 9.6% stake in Cathay Pacific for HK$5.16bn ($662m; £506m).

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The deal will make the airline Cathay Pacific's third largest shareholder. It is the first known investment by a Middle Eastern airline into an east Asian carrier.

China is the world's fastest growing aviation market and is set to be the largest by 2022.

Last month, the International Air Transport Association brought forward its forecast for when China would overtake the US as the world's largest aviation market by two years.

U.S. carriers American Airlines and Delta have also tried to tap into the fast-growing market.

In March, American Airlines paid $200m for a near 3% stake in China Southern Airlines - the largest of China's three major state-owned carriers. Delta spent $450m for a 3.6% stake in China Eastern Airlines two years ago.

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