Deadline nears for Qantas-Emirates decision

written by australianaviation.com.au | December 10, 2012
The ACCC is expected to issue a draft ruling on the Qantas-Emirates tie-up by Christmas. (Rob Finlayson)

Australia’s competition watchdog has affirmed plans to rule on the proposed Qantas-Emirates alliance before Christmas, saying it will release a draft decision by Dec. 20.

ACCC Chairman Rod Sims told Fairfax that officials from the organisation were busy writing what would be a long draft decision and said an early release of the verdict was possible but not likely.

The tie-up, announced in September and scheduled to take effect in April 2013, would see Qantas re-route most of its Europe-bound traffic through Dubai. Qantas has said it needs the alliance in order to survive as an international carrier.

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Rival Virgin Australia, which operates its own alliance with Etihad, has argued that the Qantas-Emirates tie-up is too broad and would hurt consumers. But the deal has received strong support from government, airports and tourism organisations.

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