October 14, 2015 / 2:56 PM / 2 years ago

Airline partners Delta, Gol expect to apply for immunity from antitrust law soon

Customers wait their turn to be served at at the Delta airlines office in Caracas July 7, 2014. REUTERS/Carlos Garcia Rawlins

(Reuters) - Delta Air Lines Inc (DAL.N) expects the United States and Brazil to reach an aviation deal that removes restrictions on flights between the countries in the next year, the airline’s president told investors on a call Wednesday.

A so-called “Open Skies” deal would allow Delta and its airline partner Gol Linhas Aereas Inteligentes SA (GOLL4.SA) to apply for immunity from antitrust law and thereby coordinate the prices and timing of their U.S.-Brazil flights.

“We anticipate to file for antitrust immunity shortly” after a deal is reached, Delta’s Ed Bastian said.

Delta expanded its alliance with Gol under a $446 million stock and loan agreement in July. Delta owns just under 10 percent of Gol, Bastian said Wednesday.

Reporting By Jeffrey Dastin in New York

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