Etihad Airways, the national airline of the United Arab Emirates, has appointed Craig Thomas as Country Manager Thailand and Mekong Region.

Based in Bangkok, Mr. Thomas will oversee the airline’s operations across Thailand and the Mekong region. He will lead the local team, focusing on continual development of traffic to and from Abu Dhabi and the entire network.

Peter Baumgartner, Etihad Airways’ chief commercial officer, said: “Mr Thomas brings with him extensive experience and expertise in the aviation industry to this growing market. I am very pleased to welcome him to this highly important region and wish him success in further growing the business between Bangkok and Abu Dhabi.”

Craig, a South African citizen, joined Etihad Airways as Sales and Marketing Manager when the airline opened its South Africa office in September 2005. In January 2006, he was appointed Country Manager for South Africa, and oversaw the increase of Etihad frequencies to Johannesburg from two per week to daily, as well as the introduction of a daily service to Cape Town in October 2009.

Etihad operates two daily flights from Bangkok to its home base in Abu Dhabi and further on to 64 destinations in the Middle East, Africa, Australia, Europe, North American and Asia. Etihad’s commitment to excellence in customer service resulted in the airline being awarded ‘World’s Leading Airline’ at the 2009 World Travel Awards.