Lufthansa CEO sees mergers if EU-US talks fail

Lufthansa CEO, Wolfgang Mayrhuber sees airline consolidation in Europe gaining pace if the European Union and the US fail in their troubled bid to liberalise air traffic between the regions, according to his interview with Financial Times. The newspaper said Mayrhuber signalled in the interview that Lufthansa did not feel under pressure to quicken the pace of current ‘creeping’ consolidation in Europe by adding to its 2005 purchase of Swiss International Airlines in the foreseeable future.

The US government’s continued refusal to allow foreign airlines to own more than 25 pct of US carries ‘would only hinder trans-Atlantic joint ventures and increase the probability for European consolidation,’ he said.