North America

Southwest and NetJets Pilots Urge President-elect Trump to Reverse NAI Foreign Carrier Permit

Norwegian B787

The Southwest Airlines Pilots’ Association (SWAPA) is partnering with the NetJets Association of Shared Aircraft Pilots (NJASAP) to urge President-elect Trump to reverse the decision to grant Norwegian Air International a foreign carrier permit.

The two groups will meet in the nation’s capital for a Rally for U.S. Aviation Jobs on January 24.

In the final days of his administration, President Obama granted Norwegian Air International (NAI) a foreign carrier permit, placing tens of thousands of U.S. jobs at risk.

“This decision is just another failed trade deal by the Obama administration, giving foreign companies an unfair advantage over U.S. companies,” said Captain Jon Weaks, SWAPA President.

“Only President-elect Trump has the power to reverse the lame duck Obama Administration’s reckless approval of NAI before it takes effect on January 29.”

The late-December decision to grant NAI a foreign carrier permit paves the way for NAI to execute on its flag of convenience (FOC) scheme. This permit allows for Norwegian to establish an Irish subsidiary in order to take advantage of Ireland’s impotent labor, tax, and social laws. This is exactly the type of scheme that decimated the U.S. shipping industry and will be the catalyst for a race to the bottom in the U.S. airline industry.

Government affairs representatives from SWAPA and NJASAP continue to work every possible avenue to garner the attention of the president-elect and right this wrong. With the January 29 deadline looming, the groups believe that time is of the essence, and the time for action is now.

“The Obama administration has tilted the field of play in favor of a foreign competitor and put thousands of good-paying, middle-class, U.S. aviation jobs at risk. It will be up to the Trump administration to save them,” said SWAPA Governmental Affairs Committee Chair Chip Hancock.

Added Weaks:

“President-elect Trump was elected on a pro-American worker platform and has already delivered wins for several American companies. It is our sincere desire that the president-elect will right this wrong by repealing this detrimental ruling.”

Located in Dallas, Texas, the Southwest Airlines Pilots’ Association (SWAPA) is a non-profit employee organization representing the more than 8,500 pilots of Southwest Airlines. SWAPA works to provide a secure and rewarding career for Southwest pilots and their families through negotiating contracts, defending contractual rights and actively promoting professionalism and safety.



  1. Jamie

    January 13, 2017 at 11:22 pm

    This is a free market.
    The world truly is a free market when it comes to air travel. I don’t like Obama as much as some. And some will complain this hurts American jobs and workers… But if another airline can come in and offer great service, to destinations that others go to. Cheaper than the Americans, in America? Competition? Price? Without bag fees? Fees for this and that? I’m all for it. I’m sorry to the union pilots and baggage handlers and flight attendants. But your unions are pricing you out of jobs.

    • Nyles

      January 14, 2017 at 4:13 pm

      Sorry Jamie but you just showed how little you understand of what’s going on. Pilots and flight attendants at all US airlines DO believe in free market competition. The problem is that there’s no way one can compete with a “fake” Norwegian subsidiary based in Ireland that’s using labor from Philippines, Thailand and other very low cost countries to compete with US employees. Unless we slash average US salaries by 80% or more and get rid of any and all social benefits such as social security and even the most basic health care – you’ll never be able to compete with them. Capitalism works but ONLY if the competition is fair.. Allowing NAI to compete in the US is simply outsourcing of good paying US jobs to foreign carriers. NAI is the first airline, there will be others.

      • Nyles

        January 14, 2017 at 4:17 pm

        …and by the way, I’m a conservative voter so this has nothing to do with my political affiliation.
        This is NOT capitalism. It’s crony capitalism, obama’s revenge for the fact many airline employees did not support his policies.

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