U.K. airlines seek £7.5 billion in emergency loans from government

Virgin Atlantic and other U.K. airlines have asked the government to supply a loan credit facility that can be repaid when the current crisis is over.

The £7.5 billion facility would allow airlines to maintain basic operations and pay their essential outgoings while in effect, mostly grounded.

Virgin Atlantic faces going out of business in all likelihood, and British Airways while part of IAG, is not denying the scale of the problem could see it on its knees in days.

EasyJet and RyanAir are facing mass groundings and layoffs as countries around Europe close their borders to prevent the spread of the virus.

British governments are notoriously slow and remarkably unwilling to bail out private businesses even when its not their fault. However the loss of Virgin Atlantic and/or BA would be a strategic business disaster for the country. That being the case you’d think government would step in. This is Britain, so don’t hold your breath.