Lipinski Calls on USDOT to Reverse Course and Deny Final Approval of Norwegian Air's Scheme That Would Destroy American Jobs

Congressman Dan Lipinski (IL-3) issued the following statement after the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) tentatively granted Norwegian Air International's (NAI) petition to operate long-haul flights to the U.S.:

“I am deeply troubled by the Department of Transportation’s tentative approval of Norwegian Air International's (NAI) petition for a foreign air carrier permit.  NAI’s flag-of-convenience business model would undermine international labor standards and fair competition.  Despite the Norwegian name, NAI seeks to operate aircraft registered in Ireland by crews working under Singaporean employment contracts.  This scheme puts domestic airlines at a competitive disadvantage, and threatens the livelihoods of hundreds of thousands of American workers.

“In 2014, I joined nearly 200 of my colleagues in a letter to DOT Secretary Anthony Foxx expressing opposition to this petition.  In addition, the House has passed an amendment that requires DOT to ensure that foreign air operators’ applications follow the terms of the U.S.-E.U. agreement, which NAI’s business model does not.  This approval is not in the public’s best interest, and could result in serious consequences for the American airline industry and its hard-working employees.  I strongly urge Secretary Foxx to consider the significant opposition that has already been voiced by Congress, the airline industry, and its labor partners, and deny NAI final approval.” 

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