Aerolineas Argentinas to Join SkyTeam Alliance
Aerolineas Argentinas, the flag carrier of Argentina, will sign an agreement by the end of October to join the SkyTeam alliance, the alliance announced on Tuesday.
The agreement will represent the official start of the process that will see Aerolineas Argentines becoming the first South American member of the airline alliance founded in 2000 by Aeromexico, Air France, Delta Air Lines and Korean Air.
As a result of the agreement with Aerolineas Argentinas, SkyTeam customers will benefit from increased access to and from Latin America. SkyTeam has been looking to strengthen its presence in Latin America due to the fact that the region has strong growth figures and a positive outlook for the future.
The process to incorporate Aerolineas Argentinas is expected to end by 2012. Last year, the Argentinian carrier introduced a five-year restructuring plan to implement a number of measures to strengthen its business model and establish itself as a major player in America.
Such plan includes key elements like fleet renewal and rationalization, adding key international destinations, increasing the density of the domestic and regional network and improving product quality and consistency.
SkyTeam is celebrating its 10th anniversary and has made significant progress during that period. In June, the alliance welcomed Vietnam Airlines and TAROM as new members. In addition, it was announced that China Eastern and China Airlines will join them in 2011.
The alliance is actively working on further extending its global network by looking for additional members from regions such as Southeast Asia, India and Latin America. Currently, SkyTeam offers its 385 million annual passengers a worldwide system of more than 12,500 daily flights to 898 destinations in 169 countries.