Qatar Airways has announced that it has increased its shareholding in IAG (International Consolidated Airlines Group), the parent company of British Airways, from 21.4% to 25.1%.
This is more significant than it sounds, because it gives Qatar Airways a veto over any major decisions (‘special resolutions’ in City parlance) which would require 75% of the shares to vote in favour.
Non-EU investors are limited to a 49% shareholding in total under EU aviation rules, and IAG does at times restrict purchases of shares by non-EU groups in order to remain under this limit.
As IAG is legally a Spanish company this position will not change under any UK / EU trade deal.
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