On Tuesday, Qatar is expected to issue a comprehensive financial report regarding its state owned Qatar airways, as stated by the U.S. State Department officials on Sunday.
Under the settlement to be announced on Tuesday, Qatar Airways will reveal audited financial reports within one year. The airline must also show major transactions with state owned enterprises.
On late Sunday, Qatar Airways and the Qatari government could not be directly reached. Three major carriers – United Continental Holdings Inc. (UAL.N), American Airlines Group Inc. (AAL.O) and Delta Air Line Inc. (DAL.N) have urged the United States government to check up on the conduct of three significant Middle Eastern carriers under Open Skies agreement since 2015.
The U.S. airlines declared that the Gulf Carriers are unfairly subsidized by their governments with over $50 billion in subsidies over the past ten years.
Qatar, Emirates and Etihad Emirates have refused to admit to the accusations. The Gulf airlines operate about two hundred flights to twelve U.S. cities per week.
The voluntary agreement came after long negotiations between senior U.S. and Qatari officials for the past few weeks. As stated by the Qatar’s Civil Aviation authority to the U.S. government, Qatar airways currently has no plans to offer “freedom flights” that will allow an airline to travel between foreign countries as a part of services to and from the home country.
Qatar must tread carefully and make the necessary actions to ensure that the transactions are made on commercial terms. The disclosures may potentially aid U.S. carriers make the case that the airline is receiving biased government subsidies.