Europe not happy with Brussels Airlines and TAP Portugal code-sharing
The European Commission thinkgs that their codeshare cooperation on passenger services between Brussels and Lisbon restricted competition between the two airlines, in breach of EU antitrust rules.
EU Commissioner in charge of competition policy Margrethe Vestager said: "Code-sharing by airlines can bring benefits for passengers in terms of wider network coverage and better connections.
"However, we are concerned that in this particular case Brussels Airlines and TAP Portugal may have used their codeshare to restrict competition and harm passengers' interests on the Brussels to Lisbon route."
The Statement of Objections sent by the Commission today concerns a codeshare agreement signed between Brussels Airlines and TAP Portugal in 2009. The Commission's objections relate to the first three years of the agreement.
Under this codeshare agreement, the two airlines granted each other the right to sell an unlimited number of seats of almost all categories (Business, Economy) on each other's flights on the Brussels-Lisbon route.
Prior to the agreement, Brussels Airlines and TAP Portugal had operated competing services on the route and were in fact the only two airlines flying this route. ■