U.S. Gives Final Approval to Norwegian Air’s Irish Subsidiary

By Paul Riegler on 2 December 2016
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The U.S. Department of Transportation announced on Friday it had given final approval for Norwegian Air Shuttle’s Irish subsidiary to operate flights to and from the United States.

“By this order, the Department makes final its tentative findings and conclusions set out in order 2016-4-12 and awards Norwegian Air International Limited the foreign carrier permit as the Appendix to this order,” the agency said in its order issued on November 30.

The move was preceded by a filing for arbitration by the European Commission over the request, for which tentative approval had been granted in April.

Both the Oslo-based carrier and the European Commission had been frustrated by a lack of progress in the approval process for a foreign-carrier permit. The Irish subsidiary of Norwegian Air Shuttle first filed its application to operate transatlantic routes in December 2013.

The permit will allow Norwegian Air International to operate flights to the United States from Ireland and other parts of the European Union. After consulting with the Justice and State departments, DOT officials said they found no basis to reject Norwegian.

The tentative approval in the spring sparked a protest in May by hundreds of employees of U.S.-based airlines chanting “Deny NAI” in front of the White House and a bipartisan group of congressmen introduced legislation to block final approval, also in May.

(Photo: Accura Media Group)

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