Council Criticizes Proposal to CAB by Eastern Airlines

by James C. Miller on October 7, 1976
by James C. Miller

Granting air carriers an anti-trust immunity for the purpose of discussing joint procurement of aircraft was opposed today by the Council on Wage and Price Stability. The Council’s opposition was made in a filing before the Civil Aeronautics Board (CAB) in response to an application to the CAB by Eastern Airlines on June 22, 1976, Eastern has requested permission to discuss with other air carriers possible agreements concerning the design of aircraft and joint negotiations with aircraft manufacturers. Ordinarily, such activity would violate the anti-trust laws. However, the carriers would be immune from prosecution if they
first obtained permission from the CAB.

Commenting on the proposal, James C. Miller III, the Council’s Assistant Director for Government Operations and Research, stated:  “The Administration, the CAB, and members of Congress have called for more competition, and less regulation, of the airlines in order to make the industry more efficient and better serve the traveling public. This proposal goes in
the other direction. Its likely outcome would be a lessening of competitive pressures, more regulation and higher costs for consumers.”

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