April 5, 2019 / 2:49 PM / a year ago

Gol, LATAM plans to buy Avianca Brasil assets worry antitrust regulator

An airplane of Avianca flies over the Guanabara Bay as it prepares to land at Santos Dumont airport in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, April 3, 2019. REUTERS/Sergio Moraes

SAO PAULO (Reuters) - Brazil’s antitrust regulator said on Friday that a plan announced by the country’s top two airlines, Gol Linhas Aereas Inteligentess and LATAM Airlines, to acquire some of competitor Avianca Brasil’s airport slots could run afoul of antitrust laws.

Avianca Brasil is going through bankruptcy and plans to auction some of its most coveted airport slots this month. Smaller competitor Azul SA had planned to acquire the assets but the deal fell apart. A potential acquisition by Azul would be less worrying on antitrust grounds, the anti-trust regulator Cade said.

Reporting by Marcelo Rochabrun; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama

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