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Ethiopian Airlines says merger proposed by Kenyan Airways is not practical

A senior Ethiopian Airlines official says a merger proposal made recently by the chief executive of Kenya Airways is not practical.

Kenya Airways Chief Executive Titus Naikuni told an aviation conference last month that his airline, Ethiopian Airlines and South African Airways should consider merging. Naikuni said the three small airlines won't be able to compete on their own in coming years.

Yissehak Zewoldi, a vice president with the Ethiopian airline, told The Associated Press on Thursday that the advantage of increased scale would be positive and that Ethiopian Airlines investigated the idea. But he said its practicality is "highly doubtful." One stumbling block is that Ethiopian Airlines celebrated its one-year anniversary with the international Star Alliance on Thursday. Kenyan Airways is a member of the rival SkyTeam.