Japan Airlines (JAL) applied (18-Jun-2010) to the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism (MLIT) of Japan seeking antitrust immunity with American Airlines, so both members of the oneworld Alliance may enter a joint business agreement (JBA) and cooperate more closely on trans-Pacific routes. The application is Japan's first antitrust immunity application. JAL and American Airlines submitted the application with the US Department of Transportation (DoT) on 12-Feb-2010. Upon attaining approval from the MLIT and the DoT, JAL and American will operate as independent legal entities working together to strengthen their service offerings on services between the US and Asia and improve their efficiencies, lower operating costs and heighten competition in the trans-Pacific market. The move comes after an open skies agreement between the nations was reached in Dec-2009 (Dow Jones, 18-Jun-2010). [more]
Japan Airlines: "We are excited to have taken another defining step towards forging a closer relationship with our partner American Airlines so that we can combine strengths to offer our customers travelling on trans-Pacific routes unprecedented convenience and flexibility. With the immunity, we can greatly enhance competition in this region of growth, including at the strategically located Haneda Airport which will soon commence scheduled international flights. This is an opportune time for both airlines to retain existing customers, attract new travellers and to lift revenue," Masaru Onishi, President and CEO. Source: Company Statement, 18-Jun-2010.
AMR: "We very much look forward to working even more closely with our valued oneworld partner, Japan Airlines. We appreciate the important role of the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism and look forward to receiving the appropriate government approvals that will allow us to provide customers with more integrated air service in one of the world's growing aviation markets and provide benefits to both the US and Japanese economies," Gerard Arpey, Chairman and CEO. Source: Japan Airlines Company Statement, 18-Jun-2010.