ACCC probes airline competition

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission will conduct a formal investigation into airline competition in the domestic market, it announced today.

ACCC Chairman Alan Fels said that the ACCC is committed to ensuring that the Australian aviation industry remains competitive and the benefits of fair competition are maintained and enhanced.

Virgin Blue has been pushing for the ACCC to look at Qantas’s expansion of capacity over the course of 2001 to rival Virgin services.

Since the demise of Impulse Airlines and the collapse of Ansett, the airfare discounting that true competition has brought over the last 14 months has been in danger. Qantas now has around 90 per cent of the domestic market, making the future uncertain for Virgin Blue and the struggling Ansett II.