Qatar Airways official called for continued Open Skies debate

Qatar Airways Group Chief Executive Officer Akbar Al Baker spoke about the continuing U.S. Open Skies debate during a Washington D.C. news conference this week.

Al Baker said the three largest US airlines -- America, Delta and United -- have made baseless claims in "a transparent attempt to block new competition and limit consumer choice."

"U.S. Open Skies Agreements are about offering choice – the ability to fly with the airline you prefer -- to regions which are under-served by US carriers," said Al Baker. "The Big Three want to restrict choice. World travelers would suffer if they succeed."

Al Baker pointed out that many American groups and corporations -- including airports, travel and trade groups and consumer organizations -- support Open Skies agreements.

"Qatar Airways offers important services to the United States and many American interests recognize our value," Al Baker said. "We serve in the Gulf region and Indian subcontinent that U.S. carriers do not serve."

In 2014, Qatar Airways flew 248,000 passengers to the United States.

"The Big Three do not compete with us on a single non-stop route," Al Baker said. "The beneficial exchange of culture and commerce made possible by the U.S.-Qatar Open Skies Agreement must not be blocked by the Big Three merely because we have chosen to serve markets that they have ignored."

More information on Qatar Airways can be found online at

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