‘Ridiculous’: Qantas unleashes rival airline

Qantas has refuted all the “conspiracy theories” made by a regional airline, calling the comments “far-fetched” and “ridiculous”.

Australian airline Rex has announced that the airline is forced to remove five more regional areas from its services to improve the company’s financial performance.

In doing so, Rex lashed out at fellow Australian airline Qantas for “predatory behavior” that he claims has led to route cancellations. In a sensational response, Qantas has refuted Rex’s “weird conspiracy theories”.

As of June 30, regional centers in Bathurst, Grafton, Lismore and Kangaroo Island will no longer be served by Rex. Ballina will also be removed from the network from July 2, with two more routes pending further review.

In a statement from the airline, Rex’s vice-chairman, the Hon John Sharp AM, blamed competitor Qantas for terminating the routes.

“It’s unfortunate that these regional communities are the collateral damage of Qantas’ bullying and callous behavior,” Mr Sharp said.

“This behavior is all the more unscrupulous after receiving more than $2 billion in federal bailouts in the past two years.”

“Qantas’ much-discussed predatory actions on Rex’s regional routes have meant that Rex no longer has the ability to cross-subsidize these fringe routes.”

Mr Sharp said the decision was made with a “heavy heart” but that it had to be done “in an effort to improve Rex’s financial performance”.

Qantas hits back at ‘ridiculous’ claims

In response to the claims, a Qantas spokesperson said Rex’s statement was “just ridiculous.” They said the claims were an example of the regional career trying to “make up more weird conspiracy theories.”

“Rex’s claims against Qantas are so far-fetched that we had to create a dedicated page on our website to refute them and update them regularly,” they said.

“Rex is always looking to blame others when it withdraws from regional routes, but none of its claims are being investigated.”

Qantas also refuted claims that Rex’s demise in these regions was the result of the carrier’s predatory behavior.

“Rex has a monopoly on three of these routes it exits, so if it can’t make them work, it has no one else to blame but itself,” they said.

“Rex says it doesn’t have the resources to cross-subsidize these routes, but has no problem finding money to invest in more aircraft for the capital’s 737 operations.

“That must be confusing for regional customers, as Rex’s slogan is that their heart is in the country.”

Termination comes as the route from Canberra to Sydney is shortened

Last week, the regional airline announced that it would Route from Canberra to Sydneyjust a year after the service’s launch in 2021. The move came weeks after Jetstar – a wholly owned subsidiary of the Qantas Group – was scheduled to hit the market, with flights from Melbourne and the Gold Coast.

“Unfortunately, the arrival of an additional operator and the very high charges imposed by Sydney Airport from June 1 means that the route is no longer viable for Rex,” said Mr Sharp.

“The resources are being diverted to other routes that yield better returns.”

At the time, Sydney Airport also responded to the claims, saying they had made efforts to keep Rex on the Sydney to Canberra route.

“Sydney Airport made a number of efforts to support Rex’s operations on the Sydney-Canberra route, and we made good progress in reaching an agreement,” the statement said.

“Rex’s suggestion that Sydney Airport is partly responsible for the abandonment of the route is disappointing and inaccurate.”

The rift between Rex and QantasLink (the airline’s regional arm) has peaked before.

In February 2021, John Gissing, chief executive officer of QantasLink, accused the regional carrier of provoking a “classic Rex tantrum” after accusing the carrier of predatory business conduct.

“Rex believes they have an entrenched right to be the sole carrier on some regional routes,” Gissing said, as reported by Farm Online

“Rex’s idea of ​​competition is that it is something that happens to other people.

“It feels like Rex is trying to blame Qantas for other challenges they have.”

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