Oneworld carriers British Airways and Iberia have taken another step towards their integration with the signing of a merger plan document, required under Spanish law to proceed with the tie-up.
A new Spanish company, known as BA Holdco, has been formed on British Airways' behalf and it has signed the document with Iberia and the holding organisation International Consolidated Airlines Group.
The merger plan details the legal steps needed once the merger has been approved by shareholders.
Under the plan Iberia will hive down its assets and liabilities to a new operating subsidiary which will continue to operate its business. BA Holdco will be inserted above British Airways by means of a UK court-approved scheme of arrangement.
Iberia and BA Holdco will then merge with International Consolidated Airlines Group through a Spanish law merger.
Shareholders of British Airways and Iberia will receive shares in the group which will then become the owner of the two airlines.
"The merger timetable remains unchanged," says British Airways. It expects both airlines to hold shareholder meetings, for approval, in November and complete the tie-up a month later.