|Quoting GlobeEx (Reply 60):|
If I'm not mistaken, BA has 7 763 leased out to Qantas, right?
Correct. But interestingly a current Air Britain publication listing worldwide airline fleets specifically states that the 763s leased by QF
will never be returned to BA
. Air Britain is usually a well informed organisation but where they obtained this information I do not know.
|Quoting SEPilot (Reply 77):|
BA has a long history of ignoring political pressure; during the time when it WAS government owned and the British government was financially involved
In July 1979 (almost a decade before BA
was privatised) the then British Government stated that there would be no further government interference in BA
's decision making process. This statement was made because with decades of previous disastrous interference with first BEA and BOAC and then BA
policies it would not have been possible for privatisation to go ahead successfully without the government first establishing a good record of non-interference.
Since July 1979 all BA
's decisions have been made in the interests of initially BA
's future shareholders and since privatisation their actual shareholders. Since then government civil aviation policies have sometimes favoured BA
and at other times favoured other airlines.
As an example in the early 1990s the British government renegotiated the Bermuda 2 agreement signed with the US in 1979. This renegotiation allowed VS
to operate to the USA out of LHR
in direct competition with BA
(which was not possible under the terms of the then existing agreement). On the other hand both BA
wanted to open the LHR
route but BA
was given preference over VS
Inevitably the British government has been faced with having to make decisions that inevitably favour a specific British airline. This has often happened when signing new bilateral agreements with other governments. Here I gain the impression that successive British governments have alternately made decisions that favoured and then did not favour BA
. Although this is only my personal impression it does explain how the UK has ended up with three British airlines, BA
as their main hub.
When I look around the world the only airport that I have so far determined comes anywhere near the locally highly competitive LHR
situation is ORD
. Here two (not three) airlines, AA
, operate a hub. Nearly all other major hubs are totally dominated by one airline. It usually operates around two-thirds or even three-quarters of all the slots at that hub. Apart from ORD
the only other major airport I can think of where this is not the case is the rather special case of NRT
The July 1979 policy has since been further developed. Rather than putting British airlines first as once was the case, the policy is now to put the British consumer and the British economy first. This policy, again publicly stated, has been partly responsible for developing an attitude amongst some A-netters that BA
should be called 'London Airways'. This is because the British government has encouraged the establishment of air routes from provincial British airports to hubs other than LHR
such as AMS
that benefit both the British consumer and economy (but not the British airline industry). These services, operated from the hubs of airlines like KL
have been economically difficult for airlines like BA
hubbed at LHR
to compete against.
The same British government policy is also why we have seen strong growth in flights by American airlines from their US hubs to British provincial airports. Here the British government again publicly stated several years ago that it would look favourably on applications from North American airlines requesting fifth freedom rights from British provincial airports for onward flights into Europe and beyond. In itself this statement showed why it is a good thing that the government now keeps its nose right out of BA
's decision making process. The government's perception was that offering fifth freedom rights like this would encourage North American airlines to serve British provincial airports and also increase the number of services from them into continental Europe and beyond. It has, of course, lamentably failed to do the latter.