Sumary of KLM boss: ‘Aviation will come back for sure’:
- The chief executive of KLM Royal Dutch Airlines is now working on a scenario in which international air travel could return to 2019 levels in “2024-ish”..
- Today, the Amsterdam-based operation is the smaller component of the Air France-KLM Group – which conveniently has €8.5bn (£7.4bn) of liquidity and credit lines at disposal..
- Given that the first quarter results for KLM show a loss of €337m (£292m), with a similar outcome predicted for April to June, that is a useful lifeline..
- According to arch-rival Ryanair, the French-Dutch group has received €14.4bn (£12.5bn) in state aid since the coronavirus pandemic began..
- Michael O’Leary, chief executive of Europe biggest budget airline, has lambasted what he calls “subsidy doping to KLM, which will further reduce competition and consumer choice in the Dutch and French markets”..
- But the Dutch airline has felt plenty of pain over the past year, with one in six staff – almost 6,000 people – departing the airline over the past year..
- “The biggest challenge and the reason this is so difficult is that a variant that undermines the vaccine effort would undermine the return to domestic freedom, and that must be protected at all costs.”.
- The KLM boss says that passengers’ biggest concern has switched during the pandemic from hygiene to “instability and uncertainty on government rules”….