Germany's number-one airline Lufthansa is to rescind its code-sharing agreement with Turkish Airlines because the deal is not economically attractive enough, a company spokesman said Tuesday.
"We can confirm that our cooperation (with Turkish Airlines) in the area of frequent-flying programme and code sharing is no longer profitable for us economically," the spokesman told AFP.
"As a result, we have decided to end the code-sharing flights, which are used less and less frequently by passengers and not attractive for us," he said.
Lufthansa's decision will take effect from March 31, 2014, the spokesman added.
On its website, Turkish Airlines -- which like its German partner is a member of the Star Alliance group -- protested against the move.
"We do not approve the unilateral decision of Lufthansa that was taken on these two issues and hope to be reconsidered," it said.
"As a member of Star Alliance, Turkish Airlines provides its services to all passengers of the other member airlines. Code-share flights and Frequent Flyer Programme (FFP) applications should be considered in this context."
In contrast to most other European carriers, Turkish Airlines is growing strongly. It transported nearly 39 million passengers in 2012, an increase of 20 percent over the previous year.