The world’s airline industry is heading for more consolidation because of the global recession and drop in air travel, according to the chief executive officer of Etihad Airways, the United Arab Emirates’ state-owned airline.
Combinations such as Air France-KLM Group, Europe’s biggest airline, will probably become more common as companies seek to cut costs, James Hogan said. Etihad, based in Abu Dhabi, will seek ways to work more closely with Qantas Airways Ltd., Australia’s largest carrier.
“We are already seeing a number of airlines under huge pressure,” Hogan said. “Airlines will have to make decisions as any other business does with regard to their network, their fleet and whether they rationalize, consolidate or continue to invest in expansion.”