Brussels Airlines set to receive €290 million government loan

Editorial

Brussels Airlines will receive a loan of EUR 290 million from the Belgian government, it announced this week. Parent company Lufthansa is investing another EUR 170 million in the Belgian airline.

The EUR 290 million borrowed by Brussels Airlines must be repaid within six years. Lufthansa has provided various guarantees for the loan; the Brussels Airlines brand will continue to exist, the company’s headquarters will remain in Brussels and the company will retain its own management. The position of Zaventem Airport in Brussels as an international hub must also be strengthened.

Out of the EUR 170 million that Lufthansa brings in, EUR 100 million will be used to help Brussels Airlines survive the crisis resulting from the coronavirus pandemic. The remaining EUR 70 million will be used for restructuring the company.

For Brussels Airlines, the deal will eventually increase its long-haul network. Various Belgian media report that the company’s long-haul fleet, which now consists of ten Airbus A330s, will be expanded by at least two aircraft. The deal has yet to be approved by the Lufthansa board as well as the German and Belgian governments. Finally, the European Commission will also have to give its permission for the aid package.

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