'Qantas has no alternative to Emirates deal'

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The Independent Online

The chief executive of Qantas Airways has claimed the Australian carrier would be forced to stop flying to Europe if its proposed tie-up with rival Emirates is rejected by regulators.

Alan Joyce, who ended the airline's 17-year partnership with British Airways this summer, said: "There is no alternative for us to make Europe work." Qantas's plans for a 10-year alliance with Dubai's Emirates, being considered by the Australian Competition Commission, would see Qantas flying passengers to Europe via Dubai instead of Singapore from next March. Hit by higher fuel bills, it cancelled orders for 35 Boeing Dreamliner jets in August after posting its first net loss in 17 years.