17 JULY 2017
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Codeshare partnerships between American Airlines, Qatar Airways and Etihad Airways are being terminated by the US carrier in a continuing dispute over state subsidies American claims the Mid East companies receive from their governments.
Qatar and Etihad have denied the claims in the past but American and other US carriers such as Delta and United argue government subsidies allow Qatar Airways, Etihad and Emirates to offer lower fares and more amenities to long-haul passengers.
American said cancelling code-sharing agreements with Qatar Airways and Etihad would not have a material financial impact, while Qatar Airways confirmed it would go ahead with plans to buy a stake of up to 10% in American Airlines.
“Our stock purchase request and filing is going ahead as normal,” Qatar Airways chief executive Akbar al-Baker said. His airline already holds 10% of South America’s LATAM and a 20% stake in International Airlines Group (IAG), the owner of British Airways.
Several of the companies involved – including Qatar Airways itself, American Airlines, British Airways, Iberia and LATAM – are all members of the same industry grouping, the oneworld airline alliance.
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