Love not lost between Qantas and Emirates, and the ACCC likes them, too

Love not lost between Qantas and Emirates, and the ACCC likes them, too

The alliance between Qantas and Emirates has not been dented by Qantas’ withdrawal from Dubai, and the ACCC has also granted re-authorisation for a further five years, subject to a condition.

The global alliance covers Qantas and Emirates’ air passenger and cargo transport operations remains in force following Qantas’ change of routing from Dubai to Singapore on the way to Europe.

The terms of the ACCC’s authorisation granted are largely unchanged from last month’s draft decision.

“The continued coordination by Qantas and Emirates of their air passenger and cargo transport operations will likely lead to a range of public benefits such as improved connectivity and loyalty program benefits,” ACCC Commissioner Roger Featherston said.

The ACCC has imposed a condition of authorisation to address continuing competition concerns on the Sydney – Christchurch route.

“The alliance must report to the ACCC on seats and passengers flown, fares and route profitability on routes between Australia and New Zealand. The condition allows us to set a minimum level of capacity on the Sydney to Christchurch route at any time, if needed,” Mr Featherston said.

Further information about the application for authorisation is available here.

The ACCC first authorised the alliance in 2013 for five years, subject to conditions on trans-Tasman routes.

Background

Qantas and Emirates were seeking authorisation for a Restated Master Coordination Agreement under which they will continue to coordinate their operations, including in relation to: planning, scheduling, operating and capacity, sales, marketing, advertising, promotion, and pricing for passengers, freight customers and agents, connectivity and integration of certain routes, codeshare and interline arrangements, frequent flyer programs and all aspects of customer service (including ground services and lounge access).

Authorisation provides immunity from court action for conduct that might otherwise raise concerns under the competition provisions of the Competition and Consumer Act 2010. Broadly, the ACCC may grant an authorisation when it is satisfied that the public benefit from the conduct outweighs any public detriment.

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