KLM, Schiphol ordered to stop discussing other airline's growth possibilities at airport

KLM Boeing 737-700, PH-BGP at Schiphol Airport
KLM Boeing 737-700, PH-BGP at Schiphol Airport. Saschaporsche / Wikimedia Commons

Schiphol and KLM promised consumer and market authority ACM that they will no longer discuss other airlines' growth opportunities at the airport. After four years of investigation, ACM concluded that Schiphol and KLM didn't break any competition rules, but the authority still ordered them to stop this practice, RTL Nieuws reports.

The two Dutch companies promised to no longer have contact about limiting growth opportunities of other companies. Schiphol will independently determine its investment policy, without KLM having a say. The two companies will also not discuss any "requests for bases, lounges or other specific facilities of other airlines", according to the broadcaster.

To date KLM and Schiphol discussed all these things. According to ACM, that may have been detrimental to at least Emirates and Easyjet. For Easyjet, KLM and Schiphol made agreements on airport rates and the possibility of a home base at the airport for the budget airline. And KLM was vehemently against Emirates' request to open a lounge at the airport, and Schiphol listened to the Dutch airline's complaints.

ACM hopes that this promise will mean that such possible market-disturbing practices will no longer arise. If the two companies do not comply with the agreements, they may face fines.

In a short comment, Schiphol told RTL that it is happy that an end has come to this years long investigation. "No violations were found. We attach great importance to compliance with laws and regulations", the airport said. KLM also emphasized that ACM did not find any violations. The airline finds it "important that the conclusions make clear how the relationship with its main partner can be continued", the broadcaster quotes KLM.

Neither Easyjet or Emirates responded to RTL's request for a comment. 

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