German flagship airline Lufthansa agreed Saturday to a compromise worked out between the government and the European Union, overcoming a major hurdle toward final approval of a €9 billion (US$10 billion) bailout from Berlin, reported The Brussels Times.
Lufthansa stated it had agreed to the compromise worked out between Germany and the EU in which the airline will have to give up several prized landing slots at Munich and Frankfurt airports.
The government announced the aid package on Monday, May 25, to help Lufthansa, which, like most airlines, has been struggling during the coronavirus pandemic, said an AP report.
The EU imposed conditions, however, stating that bailouts must include measures that would maintain a level playing field for other companies.
Specifics on the EU’s demands weren’t announced, but Lufthansa stated the scope of commitments it agreed to had been reduced compared to initial plans.
Under the agreement, the airline must remove up to four aircraft from the two airports, equivalent to three daily take-off and three landing rights per aircraft, to allow competitors to take the slots, the airline said.
The slots will be re-allocated through a bid process. Discount airlines Ryanair and easyJet are both thought to be interested.
Lufthansa’s supervisory board now needs to approve the full rescue package, including the conditions, and the German government needs to finalize its plans with the European Commission.
Full Content: Brussels Times
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