Open Skies

Our nation has a rich history of advancing trade policies that embody the virtues of the free market, a commitment to human rights, and the core principles of America’s founding. International trade has been a cornerstone of our nation’s economic success and exceptional nature.

Trade agreements only work, however, if both parties abide by the rules. A glaring example of how Americans are hurt when trade deals are not enforced is happening with our Open Skies agreements. These bilateral agreements between foreign countries and the United States govern international flight routes and are intended to benefit businesses and consumers alike. But in recent years, three Middle East government-owned airlines – Emirates, Etihad Airways, and Qatar Airways – have violated Open Skies policy by ignoring the terms that explicitly prohibit mass government subsidies to airlines. This trade cheating is offensive and harmful to the American people – it puts over 1.2 million American jobs at risk. Such a loss would be devastating to the American economy.

These three Gulf airlines are all heavily subsidized – investigators have proven to the tune of more than $50 billion! – by the governments of Qatar and the United Arab Emirates. In fact, without subsidization, these airlines would not be operable – they would be swimming in debt’s red ink. Government subsidies, especially on this scale, dramatically distort the market. The three airlines fly routes that are not profitable, for the exclusive purpose of driving out the competition, with their government backers covering their losses. If we don’t act, the Gulf carriers could eventually dominate flights to and from the U.S., and set prices however they please.

What can you do to help?

Sign the petition to hold President Trump to his promise to put America first – especially by overturning trade deals that give Americans a raw deal and prioritize foreign trade cheaters over American jobs.

All the tools you need to help you make a difference. Every tweet, call and letter counts, so we’ve made a toolkit to help you discuss this issue with the people in your community and the lawmakers you elected.


Fact #1: Trade agreements are only effective if they are enforced.

Fact #2: The Open Skies agreements are the most important agreements for international commercial air travel. It is essential that we protect and uphold those agreements.

Fact #3: Three airlines from Qatar and the United Arab Emirates are routinely violating the Open Skies agreements. They are threatening to destroy U.S. air travel jobs, and harming U.S. national security.

Contact Your Members of Congress

Send a message to your members of Congress. Then, call the Capitol Switchboard and ask to be transferred to both of your senators’ offices and to your U.S. representative’s office.
(NOTE: You will need to call the Capitol Switchboard each time to be transferred.)

Or look up your members of Congress below.


Contact the White House

Urge President Trump to support his trade priorities and his “Make America Great Again” economic agenda by enforcing the Open Skies agreements.



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Now that you’ve seen all of the ways you can get involved, tell us how you’d like to engage in the battle to open our skies. Please check back often for additional ways to get involved.

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