Business Irish

Wednesday 21 March 2018

IAG signs South America flight deal with LATAM

Airline boss, Willie Walsh
Airline boss, Willie Walsh
Michael Cogley

Michael Cogley

International Airlines Group (IAG), the group that owns Aer Lingus, has signed a joint business agreement between British Airways, Iberia and LATAM Airlines Group, a South American airline.

The agreement centers around flights between Europe and South America, benefiting customers by providing better links between the two locations and offering a greater choice of flights.

In a statement released to the Irish Stock Exchange, IAG chief executive, Willie Walsh, said: "We already have a close commercial relationship with LATAM Airlines Group as part of oneworld and we look forward to enhancing the relationship further.

"This joint business would benefit customers by providing them with easier journeys to more destinations with better aligned schedules and increased frequencies. This would boost both tourism and business travel between South America and Europe," Mr Walsh said.

The agreement strengthens the oneworld alliance in which all the airlines are members.

Under the arrangement airlines will provide a combined route network of over 100 destinations in South America and 87 destinations in Europe,

The deal advances customer choice via integrated networks, new non-stop routes, additional frequencies on existing routes and combined fares.

Enrique Cueto, LATAM Airlines Group's chief executive, said: "This is excellent news for Latin America. This agreement would significantly improve connectivity bringing Europe closer to our region by providing a wider choice of flights and great benefits to our customers.

"This step is key to ensuring we offer the best network to our customers and increase the options to add new destinations to LATAM and its affiliates' networks."

It is anticipated that regulatory approval could take between 12 and 18 months.

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