American Airlines and Qatar Airways Sign Partnership Deal and Codeshare Agreement
American Airlines announced Tuesday that it was launching a new strategic partnership with Qatar Airways. American and Qatar said they had signed a renewed codeshare agreement, which would allow the airlines to sell itineraries operated by both airlines.
American Airlines ended an earlier codeshare with Qatar in 2017. The three major US airlines, American, Delta, and United, for years have accused the the three major Middle East airlines, Qatar, Etihad, and Emirates of receiving subsidies in violation of trade agreements. The conflict further escalated when the US airlines lobbied the Trump administration over Qatar Airways’ minority ownership of now-defunct Air Italy, accusing it of anti-competitive practices.
American Airlines says the codeshare with Qatar Airways will help it expand in Africa, the Middle East and the Indian subcontinent. This week, “American will file hundreds of codeshares with the U.S. Department of Transportation,” said Vasu Raja, American senior vice president of strategy.
“Our goal is to continue to expand and deepen our global partnerships to complement American’s network and create more choice for our customers,” said American’s Chairman and CEO Doug Parker. “The issues that led to the suspension of our partnership two years ago have been addressed, and we believe resuming our codeshare agreement will allow us to provide service to markets that our customers, team members and shareholders value, including new growth opportunities for American Airlines. We look forward to the renewed cooperation between our airlines and hope to build an even stronger relationship with Qatar Airways over time.”
Pending government approvals, American will place its code on select Qatar Airways nonstop and connecting services to and from the U.S. and Qatar Airways’ hub in Doha, allowing American’s customers to access new destinations in the Middle East, East Africa, South Asia and South East Asia that are not currently served by American. Qatar Airways will place its code on select flights beyond American’s hubs in Dallas-Fort Worth (DFW), Chicago (ORD), New York (JFK), Philadelphia (PHL), Miami (MIA) and Los Angeles (LAX), as well as on American’s international flights to and from Europe, the Caribbean, Central America and South America.