WASHINGTON, DC – During Delta Air Lines’ first quarter earnings call on April 14, Delta’s Chief Legal Officer Peter Carter stated that the company was confident that the US government would “do the right thing” in deciding on the Big Three US airlines’ petition to restrict Gulf airlines’ – Emirates, Etihad and Qatar Airways – access to US markets.
The U.S. Travel Association issued the following statement from Executive Vice President of Public Affairs, Jonathan Grella, responding to Mr. Carter’s comments:
“We also believe that the U.S. government will ‘do the right thing’ – and reaffirm our nation’s commitment to Open Skies policy which has served our country’s interests very well for the past two decades. Open Skies has created greater competition, lower fares, and more options for American travelers and international visitors. Agreements with these Gulf carriers have further benefited Big Three airlines when arriving passengers transferred directly onto flights operated by U.S. airlines. We believe and expect that the Obama Administration will reject the Big Three’s attempt to limit competition and will instead honor America’s agreements with our international aviation partners and welcome visitors from around the world to the United States.
“U.S. Travel took a stand for Open Skies because of its great importance to travelers and to the U.S. economy. When more international visitors come here they spend a lot of money, benefiting local communitites, small businesses and American workers. It is imperative that our government continue to support pro-competition, pro-growth and pro-traveler policies, like Open Skies.”