The ACCC (Australian Competition and Consumer Commission) has given its formal approval to the planned Delta Air Lines-Virgin Blue joint venture, citing that it will have competition benefits for the travelling public.
“The ACCC considers that the joint venture is likely to assist Virgin and Delta to compete more effectively against the incumbents on the routes – Qantas and United Airlines,” ACCC chairman Graeme Samuel said.
In particular, the ACCC noted that the joint venture will allow passengers flying on Delta or V Australia services greater connectivity throughout Australia and the United States. It also expects that cost savings will be passed on to passengers due to the increased competition on Pacific routes.
Delta and Virgin Blue are expected to start the joint venture during 2010, subject to granting antitrust immunity from the US Department of Transport.