VIM Airlines, the Russian airline that connects Liège airport and 8 cities in China for Chinese tour operator U-Tour is facing a “difficult economic situation”, the airline admitted on Facebook on Monday. In the past few days the airline was forced to cancel or delay dozens of flights.
Update 09:00: RTBF.be reports about a VIM Airlines Boeing 777 that is currently blocked at Liège Airport, leaving 360 Chinese passengers stranded. The flight was supposed to leave on Monday morning 11:00 but never took off. The airport looked for a solution for the passengers -disoriented and very angry- and found a hotel for 180 passengers, the other half was forced to stay at the airport. The Liège airport spokesman confirmed to RTBF.be that the Boeing 777 aircraft is “chained” and that they are looking for alternative solutions to bring the stranded passengers home. (Link: http://www.aviation24.be/forums/viewtopic.php?p=356159#p356159)
Our working capital has run out, our financing has been frozen and the airport services are suspended.
The airline is negotiating with banks and other financial institutions to support the airline, to normalize the situation and to help the stranded passengers. The airline also counts on the help of the state agencies, as well as the tourist industry.
As the airline can’t fly without the necessary money, VIM Airlines might go into receivership.
Back in February Aviation24.be already wrote an article about the financial woes of VIM Airlines, but was forced to write a right of reply as VIM Airlines public relations director Elena Fedorova completely disagreed with our views on the financial situation of the airline.
Update 11:00: Liege Airport says it has found buses and hotels for all the stranded passengers.