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Iberia Losing Market Share On Latam Routes

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Iberia is losing ground to rivals on its prized routes to Latin America and, because it is unable to close the gap, it may change some services or stop flying them temporarily.

"At the moment we are not competitive and we cannot defend the market share we have," chief executive Rafael Sanchez Lozano said on Friday in a radio interview,

Iberia, part of International Airlines Group, controlled around 20 percent of all routes to Latin America from Europe, but was not capable of defending its market share from rivals such as Air France, Sanchez Lozano said.

Iberia, in the middle of a restructuring, said this month it will cut a quarter of its staff, or 4,500 workers, to stop losses. It hopes the shake-up will improve profit by at least EUR€600 million (USD$773 million) in the next three years.

Earlier this month, IAG reported a 96 percent fall in nine-month operating profit, to EUR€17 million, pulled lower by high fuel costs and a EUR€262 million operating loss at Iberia.

(Reuters)