Singapore Airlines rules out buying majority stake in Virgin Australia

SIA said that they would prefer the Australian airlines remain "independent" rather than be fully-owned by any single entity.

The Singapore Airlines (SIA) has rejected speculations about buying majority stake in Virgin Australia.

In a statement to the press on Friday morning, SIA said that it has no plans to take majority stake in Virgin Australia. "SIA's interests in the Australian market - as well as in Virgin Australia itself - are best served through an independent Virgin Australia," SIA spokesperson Nicholas Lonides told AFP.

Ever since Air New Zealand announced its intention to sell its 25.9 percent stake in the Australian airline, speculations about SIA's interest in Virgin started.

But the airline has finally broken its silence after Air New Zealand finalized its $260 million sale of a 19.98 per cent stake in Virgin to Chinese conglomerate Nanshan this week.

The Singapore carrier currently has a 20.09 per cent stake in Virgin Australia and it admitted it has plans to increase its stake to 25.9 percent.

Lonides said both the airlines "have an extensive commercial partnership that has gone from strength to strength over the past five years, providing many consumer benefits."

"SIA is confident of the long-term prospects of Virgin Australia and is committed to supporting its long-term growth," he added.