Just as Etihad announced that it would be flying its new three-room “residence” aboard an A380 to New York ($64K round trip) this year, US airlines American, Delta and United made their case today against Emirates Airline, Etihad Airways and Qatar Airways.
The US carriers contend that these Gulf carriers have received over $40 billion in subsidies from their governments, which has distorted the market and given them unfair advantage over US carriers. The subsidies include things like interest-free “loans” with no repayment obligation, free land or government assumption of fuel-hedging losses. US Airlines presentation
The US carriers say that these subsidies run counter to the spirit of “Open Skies” agreements formed in 1992, and they want the US government to re-open and modify these agreements to address the distortion brought on by these subsidies.
Take a spin through the bullet points and charts laid out here (it’s a quick read) and leave your comments below!
Consider answering these questions: Are US airline justified with their position or are they just whining? Are Gulf carriers unfairly subsidized, asking US carriers to play in a distorted market and trying to cover that up? Have you flown a Gulf carrier? Would you? Do you even care? Why?
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