Carriers are set to lose billions of dollars over the next few months due to the COVID-19 outbreak. However, United States President Donald Trump has made it clear that his country’s airline industry would be the number one priority for federal assistance.
Bloomberg reports that the US Treasury Department is planning to lend operators $50 billion in a coronavirus stimulus plan. However, this is less than what the industry initially requested. Altogether, airlines had sought $29 billion in grants and another $29 billion in loans.
Despite the number falling short, Trump once again spoke highly of the industry during a coronavirus briefing. He sympathised on the twist of fate that airlines have faced at the turn of the decade.
“They go from having the best year they’ve ever had to having no passengers because of what we had to do to win this war,” Trump said, as reported by Bloomberg.
The president has been in close communication with CEOs of US carriers over the last few weeks. Even after he imposed a travel ban on Europeans, he still allowed flights to operate across the Atlantic for US residents.
This was a consolation for firms such as United Airlines as they could still fly to Europe. However, with the European Union now imposing a 30-day restriction, these airlines will now face more losses.
United Kingdom Prime Minister Boris Johnson echoed Trump’s admiration for carriers at a press conference today. When asked about giving support to the airline industry, the politician said that the government will give assistance to the UK’s great companies so that they can have a swift return to action when the time comes.
Ultimately, several markets will be looking for support amid these tough times. With it being unclear on how long the situation will last, global authorities will be looking to place systems that will benefit the health of the public while reducing the long-term negative impact on the economy.
Along with providing financial support for airlines so that they maintain in good shape in the long run, officials may also need to reconsider how travel bans have been enforced. Millions around the world are in need of air travel for personal and professional reasons. Currently, several people can’t see their families or provide important assistance.
Therefore, balanced measures will need to be taken if the situation is not improved when the initial restriction periods are over. Perhaps an overhaul of how health checks are made will help. The implementation of new technologies to support existing security checks could go a long way. This could help many airlines maintain some sort of operations over the next few months.
Nonetheless, Trump is evidently a big supporter of the airline industry and will ensure that it bounces back following this drop.
Are you happy that the US government will support the aviation industry during this period? Have you been impacted by the restrictions? Let us know what you think of the situation in the comment section.