SkyTeam Again Files for Antitrust Immunity

SkyTeam carriers Air France, Alitalia, CSA Czech Airlines, Delta Air Lines, KLM Royal Dutch Airlines and Northwest Airlines on Thursday applied for antitrust immunity for transatlantic routings with the U.S. Department of Transportation. Delta currently has antitrust immunity with Air France, Alitalia and CSA, while Northwest has antitrust immunity with KLM. Should the carriers win the DOT's approval--a previous application was withdrawn in 2005 due to DOT resistance--it would allow for "more choice in flight schedules, travel times, services and fares," SkyTeam said in a statement. This second try may stem from the fact that regulatory hurdles for alliances seeking immunity are expected to be more lax thanks to the recent Open Skies agreement between the European Union and the United States.

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