Germany’s flagship carrier Lufthansa and Frankfurt airport, are stepping up their attack on KLM and Schiphol.
In an interview in the Telegraaf on Thursday, Lufthansa chief Carsten Spohr said: ‘We are trying to convince German authorities to lower fees at Frankfurt airport in line with the reduction in charges at Schiphol two years ago.
‘Close partnership between Lufthansa and Frankfurt will ensure that we grow together, for example in the construction of a new terminal,’ he said.
Lufthansa, Europe’s largest ‘full-service’ carrier, has made a number of major moves in recent months. It ‘wet-leased’ 33 (crewed) aircraft from troubled Air Berlin and has managed to make it profitable. Importantly, Air Berlin is part-owned by Abu Dhabi-based Etihad Airways. And maintenance of cash-rich Etihad’s fleet is now being carried out by Lufthansa rather than by KLM.
Schiphol lowered its fees, Spohr said, but failed to invest in the needed infrastructure in time to handle the increased traffic. He cited the long waiting times at the Amsterdam airport.
‘We no longer look to Schiphol as our ideal, but instead turn to Munich airport where we are co-owners of the terminal,’ he said. Frankfurt’s new passenger terminal will be operational two years before Schiphol rolls out its new facilities.
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