$ 29.3 billion in losses assessed in 2020 last February, 113 billion in early March and now $ 252 billion … Weeks go by and the International Air Transport Association (Iata) continues to revise upwards its forecasts concerning the losses that the air sector could register this year due to the coronavirus.
The health crisis should indeed deprive the industry of $ 252 billion in income this year worldwide, warned its federation on Tuesday, more than doubling a previous estimate of $ 113 billion.
Need cash urgently
“This is the deepest crisis ever experienced by our industry,” said Alexandre de Juniac, director general of the International Air Transport Association (Iata), during a conference call, calling on governments help in the face of the arrival of a “liquidity crisis”.
“We need an aid package urgently” and “we desperately need cash”, he continued.
The crisis is now affecting 98% of passenger traffic worldwide, according to Iata, which specifies that at the start of the year an average airline had two months of cash ahead of it.
Last week, airlines, many of which had to ground almost their entire fleet due to traffic restrictions related to the coronavirus, had already called for help asking for emergency assistance of up to 200 billion dollars (185 billion euros).
Iata, which brings together 290 companies representing 82% of world traffic, had asked for “direct financial support” from the passenger and freight carriers to compensate for their shortfall and fill their cash holes but also for loans and guarantees. by governments and central banks, or by tax cuts and payroll taxes.