Qatar to agree to brand new financial disclosures for state owned-airline

Qatar is actually required to agree on Tuesday to Discharge detailed financial information about its state-owned Qatar Airways, U.S. State Department officials said late on Sunday, a move which follows pressure through U.S. airlines for the item to disclose any potential subsidies the item has received.

Under an understanding to be announced Tuesday, Qatar Airways will issue audited financial reports within a year in addition to within two years must disclose significant brand new transactions with state-owned enterprises, U.S. officials said.

Qatar Airways in addition to the Qatari government could not immediately be reached late Sunday.

The largest U.S. carriers — American Airlines Group, United Continental Holdings in addition to Delta Air Lines — since 2015 have urged the U.S. government to challenge the conduct of three major Middle Eastern carriers under “Open Skies” agreements. The U.S. airlines contend the Gulf carriers are being unfairly subsidized by their governments with more than $50 billion in subsidies over the last decade.

Qatar, Etihad Airways in addition to Emirates, have denied those accusations. The Gulf airlines operate around 0 flights per week to 12 U.S. cities.

Qatar in addition to the United States are required to disclose details of the understanding on aviation issues at a U.S.-Qatar strategic dialogue in Washington on Tuesday which will include U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson in addition to Defense Secretary James Mattis, along with senior Qatari officials, U.S. State Department officials said. They spoke on the condition of anonymity because the agreement has not been made public.

The voluntary agreement follows extensive negotiations with senior U.S. in addition to Qatari officials in recent weeks. Qatar’s Civil Aviation authority told the U.S. government which Qatar Airways has no current plans to offer so-called “fifth freedom flights” which allow an airline to fly between foreign countries as a part of services to in addition to through its home country.

Qatar must take steps to ensure which the transactions are conducted on commercial terms. The disclosures could help U.S. carriers make the case which the airline is actually getting unfair government subsidies.

The voluntary agreement does not to apply to Etihad or Emirates, both based inside the United Arab Emirates. The State Department plans brand new talks with UAE as early as next week, U.S. officials said.

In a Sept. 14 White House memo disclosed by Reuters in addition to additional outlets in December, Trump administration officials agreed the U.S. government “should take action to address the unfair behavior of Gulf carriers.”

U.S. smaller airlines grouped under the U.S. Airlines for Open Skies Coalition said in December the item was “confident further investigation by the Trump administration will show the claims for what they are: a political ploy to protect themselves through competition in addition to limit choice for U.S. travelers.”

The coalition represents Atlas Air Worldwide Holdings, FedEx, Hawaiian Airlines, in addition to JetBlue Airways.

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