- Title: Airlines beg for rescue as coronavirus hit soars to $250 bln
- Date: 24th March 2020
- Summary: ROISSY-EN-FRANCE, FRANCE (RECENT- MARCH 19, 2020) (REUTERS) PLANES ON TARMAC OF CHARLES-DE-GAULLE AIRPORT VARIOUS OF AIR FRANCE PLANES PASSENGERS IN DEPARTURE AREA OF CHARLES-DE-GAULLE AIRPORT SCREEN SHOWING FLIGHTS, SOME OF WHICH ARE CANCELLED GENEVA, SWITZERLAND (MARCH 24, 2020) (REUTERS) (SOUNDBITE) (English) INTERNATIONAL AIR TRANSPORT ASSOCIATION (IATA) DIRECTOR-GENERAL, ALEXANDRE DE JUNIAC, SAYING (INTERVIEWED OVER SKYPE): "Now that the crisis has extended by the end of February, we have something like two months or slightly less, ahead of us in terms of cash. After that, we'll run out of cash. So we desperately need a cash injection in our industry, for an amount of 200 billion US dollars, we have estimated as a cash need for the airline industry."
- Keywords: COVID-19 IATA airline industry bailout cash injection coronavirus economic crisis
- Reuters ID: LVA001C6EXCNB
- Location: ROISSY-EN-FRANCE, FRANCE/ GENEVA, SWITZERLAND/ CRAWLEY AND LONDON, ENGLAND, UNITED KINGDOM/ TULSA, OKLAHOMA, USA/UNKNOWN LOCATION
- City: ROISSY-EN-FRANCE, FRANCE/ GENEVA, SWITZERLAND/ CRAWLEY AND LONDON, ENGLAND, UNITED KINGDOM/ TULSA, OKLAHOMA, USA/UNKNOWN LOCATION
- Country: France
- Duration: 00:01:02
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Topics: Health/Medicine
- Story Text: Global airlines urged governments on Tuesday (March 24) to speed up bailouts to rescue the air transport industry as they doubled their estimate of 2020 revenue losses from the coronavirus crisis to more than $250 billion.
"We are in an emergency situation, we need cashâ€¦ So we need speed and massive action," Alexandre de Juniac, director general of the International Air Transport Association (IATA), told Reuters Television.
With planes unable to fly because of travel restrictions, compounded by a plunge in demand over fears of contagion, airlines worldwide have grounded most of their fleets, and many have said they need government support to survive.
The industry is now contemplating months without flying. Ryanair, Europe's biggest airline by passenger numbers, said on Tuesday it did not expect to operate flights in April or May.
Many will not survive such a hammer blow to their finances. IATA said that without government support, up to half of airlines face possible bankruptcy in the coming weeks.
"We desperately need a cash injection in our industry, for an amount of 200 billion US dollars," de Juniac said.
IATA, which groups some 280 airlines including most of the world's largest network carriers, said signs of a deep recession could delay a recovery in airline travel - in contrast with the fast rebound seen after previous epidemics.
(Production: Michaela Cabrera)
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