Qantas (ASX:QAN) has been given tentative approval to pursue a partnership with American Airlines.
The ACCC has granted interim approval for Qantas and American Airlines to co-operate on services between Australia/New Zealand and the US.
Qantas recently started flights to Dallas/Fort Worth as part of the agreement and has asked for authorization to support the service using the terms of the deal, the body announced.
ACCC said it gave the nod because the two airlines do not currently directly compete on any routes.
The regulator will nevertheless seek submissions on the agreement, and make a final approval after the results are in later this year.
Authorisation provides immunity form court action over conduct that would otherwise be considered anti-competitive, ACCC said.
Last week, Qantas said it plans to extend the partnership to offer services in 54 more North American destinations, including New York, Las Vegas, Toronto and Mexico City.
The airliner also said its international yield for the year-to-date ending April grew 8.7% year-on-year exclusive of forex impact, and total passenger numbers grew 8.1%.
QAN shares fell 2.31% in Thursday's trading to $1.905.