Qatar Airways eyes stake in American Airlines

Qatar Airways eyes stake in American Airlines

Qatar Airways has revealed it plans to take a 4.75 per cent stake in fellow oneworld carrier American Airlines.

The Doha-based airline said in a statement that it saw a “strong investment opportunity” in the American carrier.

“Qatar Airways believes in American Airlines’ fundamentals and intends to build a passive position in the company with no involvement in management, operations or governance,” explained a statement.

“Qatar Airways has long considered American Airlines to be a good oneworld Alliance partner and looks forward to continuing this relationship.”

The Qatari carrier also revealed the stake would not exceed 4.75 per cent without prior consent of the American Airlines board.

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Qatar Airways will make all necessary regulatory filings at the appropriate time, added a statement.

However, American Airlines chief executive Doug Parker said he is was not “particularly excited” about Qatar Airways’ interest in buying up the stake.

Along with United and Delta Air Lines, American has been vocal in its opposition to Gulf carriers’ operations in the United States, arguing they should be curtailed in response to illegal subsidies from Middle Eastern governments.

Any investment could be worth in the region of $500 million.

If completed, the stake in American would will sit alongside Qatar Airways’ ten per cent stake in oneworld carrier LATAM and its 20 per cent stake in International Airlines Group, operator of Iberia and British Airways.