New Rules to Govern Competition in the Airline Industry

To deal with the issue of unfair practices in the airline industry particularly from foreign rivals, the European airlines have joined hands to come up with a better plan to handle this issue. The foreign rivals posing the greatest threat to European carriers are the Middle East carriers particularly the Fly Emirates, Qatar Airways as well as Etihad Airlines. In the past, some European carriers such as Air France, Lufthansa, and KLM have accused Gulf airlines of what they call anti-competitive behaviors. They warned the European Union that these actions were hurting the business very much. Some of the issues that they have complained about include being denied to access to some services such as ground-handling services as well as being denied access to airport slots.

Other allegations include being forced to compete with airlines that receive subsidies from their governments. However, the airlines in question have always denied these allegations. Not only have the European Carriers expressed their concerns but American airlines have also expressed their concern. Among the most affected carriers in the US are the three big carriers consisting of Delta Airways and United Airlines. However, this unfair competition is likely to end as the suggestion to establish a fair ground in Europe has been accepted by the European Parliament and Council. To understand how other careers are hurting, a law that was passed in the year 2004 to fight this unfair competition has never been used. Also, European airlines complain that the burden of proof of these allegations is expensive and they cannot afford it.

From the new rules, the European Commission, airlines as well as member states will be granted the power to launch a complaint about something they deem as harmful and unfair. This will particularly address the issue of refueling and airport slots access. If a country is found of breaking these rules or competing unfairly, they are likely to be hit with a financial obligation or will be restricted to the services that they can use in a European airport. The new rules will also affect the Middle East carriers considering that they have already registered losses in America following the immigration restrictions, the collapse of the oil prices as well as the laptop ban.

The effects are already been felt with the Fly Emirates revealing that they had experienced a decline in profit, something that has never happened in the last five years. Qatar Airways is also under threat after some Asian countries decided to stop collaboration with the nation.

About the Author

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Svilen Petrov
My name is Svilen Petrov and I’m founder and chief editor at Wings Journal. Wings Journal is an independent media, which provides you daily with the most interesting and actual news for air companies, airports, and aviation technologies.

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