Delta announced that their fight to enforce Open Skies agreements with both Qatar and the United Arab Emirates has gained ground following two milestones this past week, “with actions by Congress and Delta employees alike reaching impressive new thresholds.”
The US carrier declared that 300 members of the Congress have already written to the Trump administration, urging it to tackle “the more than $50 billion in unfair subsidies that the UAE and Qatar have provided to their state-owned airlines.”
Additionally, the campaign was fueled some more by Delta’s own workforce, numbering 30,000, which called, tweeted or sent an e-mail to the White House and Congress regarding this long-standing matter.
Delta’s campaign — dubbed “Our Future, Our Fight” — was launched earlier this year. Then in July, it released a documentary that tackled how “billions of dollars of unfair government subsidies allow the Gulf carriers to offer artificially low fares and aggressively expand to new markets without consideration for profit or demand.”
Peter Carter, Delta’s Executive Vice President and Chief Legal Officer, chastised how the unfair subsidies put his company’s employees’ jobs at risk.
“This gaming the system threatens the jobs of our hard-working employees”, saying that he was hopeful that “widespread, bipartisan support on this issue will finally spur our government to take action.”
Back in July, American Airlines severed codeshare agreements with Etihad and Qatar Airways, explaining “Given the extremely strong public stance that American has taken on the ME3 issue, we have reached the conclusion that the codesharing relationships between American and these carriers no longer make sense for us.”
Etihad Airways reacted by announcing that it would halt flights between Abu Dhabi and Dallas Fort Worth next year, adding that the route “will become commercially unsustainable” without the AA codeshare.