Brussels Airlines has decided to cancel all its flights for 4 weeks from 21 March to 19 April. The airline has requested aid from the Belgian State for 200 million euros to avoid bankruptcy in a few months, write Belgian financial newspapers “De Tijd” and “L’Echo“.
In recent days, Brussels Airlines reduced its flight offer by 20% and recently by up to 50%. The company is working on “extending partial temporary technical unemployment to 100% for the duration of the temporary suspension of flights“, said an airline spokesperson.
The financial situation of the company is “seriously and negatively affected“. As a result, according to De Tijd, Brussels Airlines asked in a letter to the government for 200 million euros aid. TUI fly Belgium and Air Belgium have allegedly also requested aid from Belgium and Brussels Airlines’ parent company Lufthansa Group did the same in Germany, Austria and Switzerland.
The whole airline industry is heavily affected by the coronavirus crisis. Market analyst CAPA warned on Monday that by the end of May 2020, most of the world’s airlines will go bankrupt. British companies (IAG and Virgin Atlantic) have reportedly asked their government for £7.5 billion in aid and the Italian government is ready to re-nationalise bankrupt Alitalia. Meanwhile, SAS will get a $300 million bailout from Denmark and Sweden as a “first step”.