State of war between US airlines and Gulf airlines

Etihad claims US carriers received $70 billion in state aid
Etihad Airways has hit back at airlines in the US, which claim it benefits from subsidies. It now alleges that US airlines themselves have benefited from more than $70 billion in government support since 2000, via tools such as bankruptcy protection and pension guarantees.
The claim comes as the Obama administration reviews allegations by US carriers that Etihad, Emirates and Qatar Airways have received more than $40 billion in subsidies, allowing them to cut prices and push competitors aside – something the Gulf carriers strongly deny.
Rather than subsidies, Etihad says it has received equity and loans from the United Arab Emirates government, its only shareholder. It hired global risk management consultancy Risk Advisory Group to review public data on Delta, United Continental and American Airlines as well as the companies they have merged with, arriving at the $70 billion figure.
“We simply wish to highlight the fact that US carriers have been benefitting and continue to benefit from a highly favourable legal regime,” Jim Callaghan, Etihad’s general counsel, said. The US airlines dismiss these charges.
[image courtesy Etihad Airways]


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