An expanded transatlantic joint venture made up of Delta Air Lines Inc, Air France KLM SA and Virgin Atlantic, received tentative approval on Friday.
The new joint venture would replace two previously approved arrangements and will allow for additional benefits.
The Department tentatively approved antitrust immunity for the joint venture and will require the carriers to report annually on commercial cooperation efforts and provide a detailed assessment after five years, the statement said.
The deal involves Air France-KLM buying 31% of Virgin Atlantic from Richard Branson’s Virgin Group. That gives it joint control of the airline together with Delta and Virgin Group. Delta owns 49% of Virgin Atlantic and 9% of Air France-KLM.