Avianca evaluates giving up some routes to achieve integration with Viva Air

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Tomorrow, Wednesday, is the deadline given by the Colombian Civil Aeronautics (Aerocivil) to Avianca and Viva Air to present some kind of appeal to re-evaluate the request for business integration of the two airlines.

One of the actions that Avianca has been evaluating, would be the willingness to give up some of the three routes with which the integration would occupy 100% of the market, taking into account that one of the reasons for denying the integration was that free competition would be affected if the group occupied more than half of the domestic market. Specifically, the routes contemplated by Avianca are Bogotá – Riohacha, Medellín – Riohacha and Bogotá – Santa Marta, according to La República.

Avianca inaugurates new route between Cali and Riohacha.

In principle, the recourse used was the exception of a company in crisis, which, according to Aerocivil and the Ministry of Transportation, was not evidenced in the application submitted. And after the integration was objected, the airlines were left with the option of filing an appeal for reconsideration and, in subsidy, an appeal for appeal or a direct appeal.

Another argument against the integration of the operation of the two airlines was the power that the group could acquire to manage prices, which, according to the Aerocivil, would have an impact on consumers’ pockets, in addition to changing the dynamics generated by a low cost airline such as Viva Air. In the face of this, it has been said that this model would not change, since the market is migrating towards these value proposals.

As of 2021, Avianca mobilized 9.7 million passengers, which equals 33.4% of the total number of users traveling by air in Colombia. Meanwhile, Viva Air managed to transport 5.1 million people, a 17.7% share in air transportation.

After the appeal is filed, the public entities will have a period of two months to respond to the request for integration of the two companies.

By Juliana Arenales