EC approves BA international business negotiations
BA get green light for links with American Airlines and Iberia
The European Commission (EC) has approved international business
negotiations involving British Airways (BA) and two major
BA can now enter a joint business agreement with American
Airlines after the firms agreed to competition rulings.
The two airlines will combine their resources for transatlantic
flights in order compete with rival carriers.
Under the terms of the contract, the two businesses must give up
four pairs of take-off and landing slots at Heathrow.
BA chief executive Willie Walsh said: "This is a pragmatic
decision so that we can get the joint business up and running as
soon as possible.
"The slot commitments provide a further guarantee that there
will be no possible loss of competition as a result of our joint
The British airline has also been given the green light to merge
with Iberia to create the International Airlines Group.
Following the completion of the deal, the newly formed company
will be Europe's second-biggest airline, after Lufthansa.