German airline Lufthansa refused to approve a €9 billion ($9.9 billion) state bailout on Wednesday due to concerns over conditions imposed by the European Union that would have forced the stricken carrier to give up key slots at two of its main hubs, reported the Deutsche Welle.
As part of the rescue package, which would give the German government a 20% stake in the airline, the European Commission wants Lufthansa to give up a number of its takeoff and landing slots at Frankfurt and Munich airports. It comes amid concerns the state aid would give the national carrier unfair advantage over competitors.
“The Supervisory Board has taken note of the conditions currently indicated by the EU Commission. They would lead to a weakening of the hub function at Lufthansa’s home airports in Frankfurt and Munich,” Lufthansa said in a statement adding that the conditions must be analyzed intensively.
However, it said the board still views the bailout “as the only viable alternative for maintaining solvency.”
Berlin agreed the rescue package on Monday, which gives the government a 20% stake in Lufthansa with the option of increasing that to a blocking minority of 25%, plus one share, enabling it to veto any hostile bids.