The aim of this chapter is to present competition issues concerning international air transport in the context of the EU–third-state air transport market liberalisation. Fair competition and level playing field postulates are prerequisites for future market openings in the EU. However, there is no international consensus as to the definition of fair competition and the regulatory regime governing international competition in air transport.

This chapter presents current bilateral, multilateral and global frameworks governing competition issues in the air transport industry, including air service agreements, the WTO/GATS system and the ICAO framework. Furthermore, it summarises the EU policy in the area of fair competition and presents the EU regulatory regime, including defence mechanisms. It also discusses likely scenarios for the development of fair competition issues on the international stage.