British Airways, affected by Covid-19, secures £ 2 billion loan
British Airways, facing declining demand due to the coronavirus, has secured a £ 2.0bn ($ 2.7bn, € 2.2bn) loan, the parent group said on Thursday. IAG as it also unveiled a Brexit-powered overhaul.
BA, which cuts thousands of jobs as it fights to survive the fallout from the deadly Covid-19 pandemic, is also currently facing industrial action in a wage dispute with freight workers at Heathrow airport from London.
“International Airlines Group (IAG) announces that British Airways has received commitments for a five-year term loan for a £ 2.0bn Export Development Guarantee Facility underwritten by a syndicate of banks, partially guaranteed by UK Export Finance (UKEF) ‘giant said in a statement.
“British Airways plans to withdraw the facility in January 2021 subject to an agreement on final terms with the lenders and UKEF.”
UK Export Finance is a state-backed agency that guarantees funding for UK businesses to help them win valuable exports.
The loan, which includes restrictions on dividend payments by the airline to IAG, aims to help BA capitalize on an expected recovery by vaccines in global aviation next year.
“Proceeds from the UKEF facility will be used to improve liquidity and provide British Airways with operational and strategic flexibility to take advantage of a partial recovery in air travel demand in 2021 as Covid-19 vaccines are distributed across the whole world, ”said IAG.
The European travel giant said it had “strong liquidity” with cash and unused facilities totaling 8.0 billion euros, excluding new loans.
IAG, whose portfolio also includes Irish Aer Lingus and Spanish Iberia, added separately that it had carried out an overhaul to ensure compliance with EU laws following Britain’s final exit from the block.
“International Consolidated Airlines Group (IAG) has implemented plans to ensure that its EU approved airlines continue to comply with EU ownership and control rules post Brexit,” he said. declared.
“These corrective plans have been approved by national regulators in Spain and Ireland and, as required, the EU has been notified.
“The plans include the implementation of a national ownership structure for Aer Lingus and changes to the group’s long-standing national ownership structure in Spain.
IAG’s own board of directors has also been changed so that it