Norwegian chief Bjørn Kjos has called on the United States department of transportation to once and for all approve the application for a foreign air carrier permit for the company’s Irish subsidiary Norwegian Air International.
“We are doing exactly what the Obama administration wants: create American jobs, bring tourists to the United States and offer Americans cheap flights,” he said.
“The transatlantic market has far too long been dominated by alliances that have been allowed to rule the market with high prices and limited choice.”
Norwegian’s chief executive addressed why it is high time that the US government approves Norwegian’s EU-based long-haul company’s application for a foreign air carrier permit, which received its Irish Air Operator’s Certificates in February.
The application for an American air carrier permit has been under consideration ever since and has been vigorously opposed by competitors and unions.
NAI meets all statutory and regulatory requirements to fly to and from the USA.
Norwegian Air Shuttle currently operates the routes between Europe and the USA.
The main reason why Norwegian has established a long-haul company in Ireland is to gain access to traffic rights in the EU, since Norway is not a member of the EU.
By gaining a foothold in the EU, Norwegian will be able to offer many new international routes in the future.
“It has taken far too long for DOT to fulfil its legal responsibility and approve NAI’s application.
“Our vision is that ‘Everyone Should Afford to Fly’, and it is a principle we intend to continue with, also with Norwegian Air International and flights between the US and Europe,” says Kjos.
Today, Norwegian has two bases in the US.
It employs 300 cabin crew members in Fort Lauderdale and New York, and is currently recruiting American pilots at its New York pilot base.
Of the 300 cabin crew, for which Norwegian received more than 7,000 applications, the vast majority had previously worked for US airlines like Delta, American and United.