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Airline JVs in the US: evolving, with greater scrutiny

Open skies pacts in the US have reached a certain level of maturity, and the result is the continued evolution of, and establishment of, airline joint ventures. But JVs are garnering new levels of scrutiny, and recently established immunised pairings now have some operating conditions that were absent in the past. 

JV applications between Hawaiian and Japan Airlines, Delta and WestJet American, and Qantas and American and LATAM Airlines Group are awaiting the administration’s approval, and it will be instructive to see what conditions the administration might impose in granting approval of those proposed tie-ups. 

Even as the US and UK have reached an agreement to keep air services at status quo after the Mar-2019 Brexit deadline, the uncertainty swirling around Brexit and the UK and European partners of US airlines could create challenges in the North Atlantic. It is an example of how trade and aviation are becoming even more entangled in the current operating environment. 

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