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Long-winded: Are airlines in the West going overboard when it comes to Gulf competition?
IATA urges Western carriers to stop blocking expansion of Gulf rivals. Given the lagging aviation business in the West, Kipp is split on this one. Which side are you on?
June 12, 2011 2:50 by kippreport
Giovanni Bisignani, head of the International Air Transport Association (IATA), has urged European and Canadian airlines to stop lobbying to block the expansion of Gulf airlines.
Called for “a more responsible approach to industry competition”, Bisignani made the statement during a recent IATA gathering in Singapore, according to an article from The National.
Emirates Airline, Qatar Airways and Etihad Airways stand to benefit if there is easier access to passengers in Europe and North America. In the meantime, the likes of Air France, Lufthansa, Austrian Airlines and Air Canada have been proactively opposing the growth of their Gulf rivals.
ACE Aviation Holdings chief executive Robert Milton, for example, says “it hardly seems a fair match” as he describes the three Gulf carriers as “the most protected airlines around” because they were state-owned and supported.
Some delegates present during at the meeting see the expansion of the Gulf carriers as inevitable, in some cases accusing those opposed to it of protectionism.
Here at Kipp, there’s a divide on viewpoints for this issue, one half siding on protectionism and the other routing for more open skies. Check out the two sides and tell us which one you’re routing for…
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