JonNYC is speculating (and such speculations usually pan out) that American AAdvantage will begin adding fuel surcharges to awards on another partner imminently.
Currently they add fuel surcharges onto awards booked on British Airways. A London roundtrip might add $850 cash cost in addition to taxes. A South Africa roundtrip from the US might add $1450.
American began adding these fuel surcharges with the advent of their joint business venture. Previously AAdvantage members could not book awards between the US and London on British Airways (but could between Canada and the Caribbean and London, as well as between London and the rest of the world) but with no fuel surcharges. The US transatlantic restriction was lifted, but these cash surcharges were added to all BA awards.
And they began adding much more modest surcharges to awards on Iberia earlier this year.
Speculation is of surcharges on Cathay Pacific or Qantas.
Currently only United and US Airways do not add fuel surcharges to any awards. Delta even recently began adding them to awards on Skyteam partner Korean Airlines. They add such fees to China Southern awards and to Virgin Australia awards and Malaysian awards, as well as to awards originating in Europe (under the nomenclature of an international origination fee).
Ironically enough, international carriers have been heading the opposite direction, likely having gone too far with these fees — the programs themselves are profitable as it is, the point at which long-term loyalty and profitability is determined is when members redeem and an unsatisfying redemption experience undermines that value proposition. So British Airways reduced fuel surcharges on intra-Europe awards for folks with active accounts, Air France KLM Flying Blue has done the same (though significantly increasing the mileage cost of intra-European business class, with increases in transatlantic award pricing expected to come as well).
Meanwhile, will oneworld get a Middle East partner? Lots of speculation around three different possibilities: Etihad partners with American, and has taken a stake in new Oneworld airline Air Berlin. Qatar and United have severed ties, and has been the subject of oneworld speculation. Qantas is expected to enter into a codesharing deal with Emirates which would also switch some Sydney – London flying from Singapore connections to transfers in Dubai.