EU approves €7 billion French aid package for Air France.

The European Commission has approved, under EU State aid rules, a €7 billion French aid measure consisting of a State guarantee on loans and a shareholder loan to Air France to provide urgent liquidity to the company in the context of the coronavirus outbreak.

Commission Executive Vice-President Margrethe Vestager, in charge of competition policy, said: “The aviation industry is important in terms of jobs and connectivity. In the context of the coronavirus outbreak, Air France has also been playing an essential role in the repatriation of citizens and for the transport of medical equipment. This €7 billion French guarantee and shareholder loan will provide Air France with the liquidity that it urgently needs to withstand the impact of the coronavirus outbreak".

As a result of the imposition of travel restrictions introduced by France and by many destination countries to limit the spread of the coronavirus, Air France has suffered a significant reduction of its services, which resulted in high operating losses.

France notified to the Commission, under EU State aid rules, an aid measure to Air France in the context of the coronavirus outbreak to enable the company to mitigate the negative consequences of the coronavirus. The measure, which has a total budget of €7 billion, will take the form of: (i) a State guarantee on loans, and (ii) a subordinated shareholder loan to the company by the French State.

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