SkyTeam today announced that the
alliance has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Aeroflot. The
MOU is a preliminary step in the new member process and outlines
Aeroflot’s intentions to undertake exclusive discussions to become a part
of SkyTeam, pending fulfillment of the alliance’s joining requirements.
The signing ceremony, which took place at the Kremlin, was attended by
Valery Okulov, president of Aeroflot, Jean-Cyril Spinetta, chairman and
CEO of Air France KLM, Leo Van Wijk, president and CEO of KLM and
representatives of SkyTeam member airlines. “The addition of Aeroflot to the SkyTeam alliance will provide our
passengers with access to new destinations in Russia and beyond, while
creating new efficiencies and synergies for member airlines,” said Mr.
Spinetta. “SkyTeam strategically aligns itself with partners that further
support our ultimate objective of providing customers the highest levels
of choice and convenience.”
Earlier this year, the SkyTeam Governing Board welcomed the airline’s bid
for alliance membership. The MOU signed today lays the groundwork for
Aeroflot to officially join the alliance; an event to occur once the
carrier fulfills SkyTeam’s requirements for quality standards, most likely
to occur in 2005.