Argentina steps up pressure on LAN

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After forcing LAN Argentina to transfer its international flights from Buenos Aires Aeroparque downtown airport to Ezeiza International, Argentinean authorities have now decided to withdraw LAN Peru's authorisation to operate its Lima-Rosario route shortly after state-owned Aerolineas Argentinas started to connect Lima with its own international hub in Ezeiza.

The Argentinean government's decision basically ignores the multinational Fortaleza treaty signed by the Mercosur members and some other South American countries in the 1990s, which allowed flights among the member countries to be operated freely.

According to LAN Peru, Argentina did not respond to the requests from Peruvian authorities or the carrier's own attempts to gain the necessary approvals to continue its operations allowed under the Fortaleza treaty and the Peru-Argentina bilateral agreement.

As a result LAN will be required to cancel its three weekly flights connecting its Lima hub with Argentina's third largest city from 1 March, although LAN says that it will not close its Rosario city office, possibly indicating hopes for a future return to the city.