El Al Israel Airlines and Israir Airlines and Tourism have canceled their merger deal. El Al had planned to merge Israir into the operations of its Sun D’Or subsidiary, reported Reuters.
However, the Israel Antitrust Authority had objected to the merger for two reasons: fear of harming competition on domestic flights to Eilat, and fear of harming competition with Arkia Airlines, bearing in mind that El Al was responsible for security for the three Israeli airlines.
El Al, which argued that flights to Eilat were economically unjustified, appealed against the decision but decided to drop that appeal on Wednesday.
“In view of the passage of time from the signing of the purchase agreement and the expected time to complete the appeal process the parties were required to negotiate the commercial terms in which the agreement could be kept in place,” El Al said.
“Since the negotiations failed and no agreement was reached, the parties … withdrew the appeal.” The withdrawal came hours before a preliminary hearing in front of an antitrust tribunal.
Full Content: Reuters