Step Forward in Qantas and Emirates Partnership

Qantas has welcomed the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission’s (ACCC) decision to grant interim authorisation for the proposed Qantas and Emirates partnership.

The partnership still remains subject to final authorisation from the ACCC, a decision which is expected in March. The interim authorisation will enable the two airlines to coordinate more closely and would also enable customers to book travel on most parts of the combined Qantas and Emirates network.

The decision includes a condition that Qantas and Emirates not yet coordinate on services between Australia and New Zealand, reflecting the fact that New Zealand law does not provide for interim authorisation.

Fares on the combined network, which would be for travel from April 2013, are expected to be available in coming weeks once discussions on pricing have taken place. These services also remain subject to regulatory approval.

Prior to receiving interim authorisation, coordination between Qantas and Emirates has focused on aspects of the partnership that do not require ACCC approval, including integrating IT systems, determining frequent flyer benefits and establishing an operational base for Qantas in Dubai.