30 March 2010

European Commission completes second stage air transport negotiations with the United States

On 25 March 2010 the outcome of the second stage of the air services negotiations between the European Union and the United States was announced:
Aviation Law Prof Blog made the full texts available in a 25 March 2010 posting.

Eight rounds of negotiations were required to achieve this limited outcome.

Reaction included that from IATA expressing disappointment at the lack of significant progress and from the Association of European Airlines (AEA) who described it as "Realistic, but not visionary." The US Air Transport Association (ATA) took a more positive view.

I cannot help but think that the 13 February 2010 draft decision by the US Department of Transportation to grant anti-trust immunity to the joint business agreement between American Airlines, British Airways and Iberia was a significant factor in achieving a positive outcome (see the Journal of Commerce article dated 15 February 2010). It remains to be seen whether the European Commission also grants approval for this alliance.

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