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Article from BTNews 7 NOVEMBER 2011

LAN and TAM and get closer

South America’s two largest airlines, LAN (Chile) and TAM (Brazil), have started the technical work preparing for integration.

The expectation is for the LATAM Airlines Group to be created towards the end of first quarter  2012, subject to final approvals from relevant authorities and to agreement from non-controlling shareholders from TAM and LAN.

In the new group’s structure, Maurício Rolim Amaro (TAM Chairman) will be the Chairman of the Board of Directors of LATAM and Enrique Cueto, LAN CEO) will be the CEO of LATAM.

The merger will result in one of the top 10 airline groups in the world – one of the top three in terms of market value – offering passenger and cargo transportation services to more than 115 destinations in 23 countries, with a fleet of over 280 aircraft and nearly 50,000 employees.  One difficulty to be overcome is the LAN membership of oneworld and TAM participation with Star Alliance.  An association with one of the groupings is inevitable. www.latamairlines.com

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