Philippine Airlines Seeks Domestic US Rights

Philippine Airlines, bullish after reopening a service to Guam, called on the US government to live up to its words on air liberalization by opening up the U.S. domestic market to PAL flights.

“If the U.S. is adamant about open skies then we will insist on open skies in the real sense of the term,” PAL president Avelino L. Zapanta told a news conference here hours after PAL`s inaugural flight to the US Pacific territory.

“Right now, the playing field is lopsided in favor of giant American carriers.  They received $15 billion in direct state aid and $32 million in insurance cover and are being shielded by their government.  What did the Philippine aviation industry get? Nothing.”
To balance the scales, he urged Washington to allow foreign carriers like PAL to operate between U.S. points in the same manner that the U.S. insistently demands free access to the RP market.

Despite the inherent handicaps, Zapanta said PAL would take on the U.S. mega-carriers on their own turf, if Washington allows it.