Qantas CEO Alan Joyce has issued a challenge to Boeing and Airbus: “to deliver an aircraft capable of flying regular direct services like Sydney-London, Brisbane-Paris and Melbourne-New York non-stop with a full payload by 2022.”

In a speech accompanying Qantas’ results for the 2017 financial year, Joyce called achieving this non-stop flight “a last frontier in global aviation” and “the antidote to the tyranny of distance”.

He said it would be a revolution for air travel in Australia. A direct flight would cut up to four hours of travel time off a journey to London.

“Removing the need to stop mid-way means your journey is uninterrupted. Less chance for delays on the ground; more time watching movies and sleeping. And a faster trip door to door.”

By Alan Joyce, Qantas CEO

He added: “I have written to the CEOs of Boeing and Airbus to extend the challenge to them. Both manufacturers are developing aircraft that can almost do the job – the Boeing 777X and the Airbus A350ULR. We believe advances in the next few years will close the gap, and Qantas has the unique operational experience to be the airline that helps make it happen.”

Joyce said: “This would be one of the most strategically important aircraft orders in the history of Qantas.”