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Biden administration moving toward blocking JetBlue-Spirit merger

Biden administration moving toward blocking JetBlue-Spirit merger

According to Politico on Friday, which cited five people with knowledge of the situation, the Justice Department is expected to file a suit to block the proposed $3.8 billion merger of JetBlue Airways Corp and Spirit Airlines Inc.

According to the article, the DoJ may file a lawsuit as early as March. It also stated that different individuals in the department’s anti-trust section had differing views over whether to initiate a case or not.

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American Airlines CEO defends JetBlue alliance in antitrust trial(Opens in a new browser tab)

In a statement sent through email, JetBlue stated, “We continue to work through the regulatory process to explain how this merger will promote competition in the airline market.” In Friday’s extended trading, shares of JetBlue and Spirit were unchanged. As the DoJ continued its anti-trust investigation earlier this week, JetBlue representatives responded to inquiries and provided depositions.

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This week, Spirit Airlines Inc. stated that it anticipates U.S. antitrust authorities would decide within the “next 30 days or so” whether to approve the low-cost carrier’s $3.8 billion merger with JetBlue Airways Corp. Spirit CEO Edward Christie stated on an investor call that the company was “now waiting to see whether the Department of Justice (DOJ) filed suit to halt the deal or enables us to proceed.”

Biden says airlines can’t treat kids like ‘piece of baggage’(Opens in a new browser tab)

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JetBlue has proposed to sell Spirit’s assets in New York, Boston, and some Florida locations in order to satisfy the DOJ and the Transportation Department, which is providing advising input on the merger clearance process. However, DOJ antitrust chief Jonathan Kanter has criticized utilizing settlements to address competition issues in mergers, preferring to litigate to stop problematic deals entirely.

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He is an aviation journalist and the founder of Jetline Marvel. Dawal gained a comprehensive understanding of the commercial aviation industry.  He has worked in a range of roles for more than 9 years in the aviation and aerospace industry. He has written more than 1700 articles in the aerospace industry. When he was 19 years old, he received a national award for his general innovations and holds the patent. He completed two postgraduate degrees simultaneously, one in Aerospace and the other in Management. Additionally, he authored nearly six textbooks on aviation and aerospace tailored for students in various educational institutions. jetlinem4(at)gmail.com

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ATR Unveils Advanced Design of New All-Business Interior

ATR Unveils Advanced Design of New All-Business Interior

In a significant development at the Aircraft Interiors Expo 2024, ATR has unveiled its cutting-edge All-Business Class configuration, a part of its ATR HighLine collection announced last year.

This innovative interior design, featuring a unique 1-1 layout, aims to redefine luxury in regional air travel. The All-Business Class interior, named ‘ETEREA’, is distinguished by its spacious individual business seats, each offering direct window views and aisle access.

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Designed by Geven, these tailor-made seats boast exceptional personal space and privacy, thanks to the ATR’s wider cross-section, which surpasses the comfort levels of narrower regional jets currently in operation.

The ETEREA seats, measuring a generous 21.6 inches in width, provide ample legroom and recline capabilities. Each seat is equipped with a personal side console that functions as both a table and a storage compartment. This thoughtful design maximizes convenience and comfort, catering to the needs of discerning business travelers.

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ATR’s All-Business Class interior offers several customization options, including an executive ceiling achieved by removing overhead bins, USB A+C charging ports, in-flight entertainment, high-speed internet access, and premium material finishes. These features collectively create an unparalleled in-flight experience, making regional travel more luxurious and efficient.

Berjaya Air, a Malaysia-based airline, will be the launch customer for the ATR 72-600 HighLine All-Business Class. Starting in 2025, Berjaya Air will deploy two customized aircraft to serve its luxury hotels and resorts. The modification of Berjaya Air’s aircraft will be executed through a Supplemental Type Certificate (STC), ensuring the highest standards of safety and performance.

In addition to luxury and comfort, ATR HighLine-equipped aircraft are designed with sustainability in mind. Emitting 45% less CO2 than similar-sized jets, these aircraft are set to revolutionize the regional travel industry by promoting eco-friendly travel solutions and accelerating the decarbonization of regional air mobility.

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ATR’s new All-Business Class interior represents a significant leap forward in regional aviation, combining luxury, convenience, and sustainability. With the introduction of the ETEREA seats and the support of launch customer Berjaya Air, ATR is poised to set new standards in the aviation industry, offering an enhanced travel experience for business travelers worldwide.

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Comac Eyes Saudi Arabian Market to Challenge Western Aircraft Giants

Comac Eyes Saudi Arabian Market to Challenge Western Aircraft Giants

Chinese state-owned aircraft manufacturer Comac is setting its sights on Saudi Arabia as a strategic launch pad for its international ambitions.

The company is stepping up efforts to sell its aircraft overseas and penetrate a passenger jet market that has long been dominated by Western manufacturers, such as Airbus and Boeing. Comac’s Chairman Dongfeng He made his inaugural visit to Saudi Arabia this week, a significant follow-up to a visit by a Saudi delegation to Comac’s facilities in Shanghai in February.

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This reciprocal visit highlights the growing interest and potential partnership between Comac and Saudi Arabia. The centerpiece of Comac’s international strategy is the Comac C919, a narrowbody aircraft designed to compete directly with Airbus’ A320neo and Boeing’s 737 Max.

While the C919 has primarily received orders from China and Southeast Asia, Comac is now looking to expand its market reach into the Middle East. Speaking at an aviation conference in Riyadh, He expressed Comac’s vision of enhancing global connectivity and diversity by contributing to the development of Saudi Arabia’s aviation transportation.

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He detailed plans for improving connectivity within a 2,000-kilometer radius of Saudi Arabia, encompassing the Arabian Peninsula, the Middle East, Turkey, and North Africa. In addition to the C919, Comac has ambitions to launch a long-haul wide-body aircraft, the C929, which could support Saudi Arabia’s aspirations to become an international aviation hub. However, the C929 program has encountered delays and the aircraft has yet to make its maiden flight.

By focusing on Saudi Arabia, Comac aims to establish a foothold in a region that could serve as a gateway for further international expansion, positioning itself as a formidable competitor to Western aircraft manufacturers once it addresses remaining safety and technological concerns.

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Severe Turbulence on Qatar Airways Flight from Doha to Dublin Injures 12

Severe Turbulence on Qatar Airways Flight from Doha to Dublin Injures 12

Twelve people, including six crew members, were injured when a Qatar Airways flight from Doha to Dublin encountered severe turbulence.

The incident occurred while the aircraft was flying over Turkey. Dublin Airport confirmed the injuries through a post on X (formerly Twitter), stating that the plane was met by emergency services upon landing.

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This response included the Airport Police and the Fire and Rescue department due to reports of injuries among both passengers and crew. The airport’s statement noted, “Upon landing, the aircraft was met by emergency services, including Airport Police and our Fire and Rescue department, due to six passengers and six crew reporting injuries after the aircraft experienced turbulence while airborne over Turkey.

The Dublin Airport team is providing full assistance on the ground to passengers and airline staff. Qatar Airways has initiated an internal investigation into the incident. The airline emphasized that the safety and security of its passengers and crew are its top priorities.

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Health authorities reported that 20 people remain in intensive care following the turbulence incident. Some individuals sustained serious injuries, including those to the spinal cord, brain, and skull.

Passenger Paul Mocc described the chaotic scene to Irish broadcaster RTE, recalling people “hitting the roof” and food and drink being thrown around. He noted that despite some crew members limping with bandages, they managed to continue providing service to passengers.

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