Air France, Delta, Alitalia near transatlantic tie-up

EU may soon approve agreement between three airlines
Air France-KLM, Alitalia and Delta are expected to win antitrust approval from the European Union in the next few weeks for a planned transatlantic tie-up, insiders have revealed.
For more than three years, the European Commission has been investigating the possibility that the SkyTeam members’ tie-up could harm passengers’ interests on certain routes. But last October the partners offered to help new rivals enter the market.
The insiders now say the commission will approve the tie-up if the airlines let rivals launch services on routes between New York and both Rome and Amsterdam. Other concessions include fare “combinability” and pro-rata deals with the new competitors, allowing rivals to offer tickets on the three airlines’ flights and facilitating links to connecting traffic.
Similar tie-ups were approved, after concessions were agreed, for oneworld members British Airways, American Airlines and Iberia in 2010 and Star Alliance members Lufthansa, United Airlines and Air Canada in 2013.
[photo courtesy Air France]