Air Canada blames government for massive losses
As the Canadian flag carrier Air Canada announced a massive loss for its second quarter of 2020, it pointed fingers at its own government, blaming it for the lackluster demand.
The company’s revenue shrunk by 89%, while its net loss exceeded CAD1.7 billion ($1.3 billion).
“Canada’s federal and inter-provincial restrictions have been among the most severe in the world, effectively shutting down most commercial aviation in our country, which, together with otherwise fragile demand, resulted in Air Canada carrying less than four per cent of the passengers carried during last year’s second quarter.” States the report, additionally emphasizing that devastation resulted from both the COVID-19 pandemic and government-imposed restrictions.
The airline has called Canadian travel restrictions “disproportionate” previously, with CEO Calin Rovinescu pleading to ease them, unsuccessfully. Most international flights were cancelled since March 21, 2020, and borders were closed for all non-essential travel.
Scrambling to save its shrinking cash reserves Air Canada laid off over half of its 38,000 employees and permanently retired 79 aircraft in one of the largest salvage operations the industry has ever seen. In addition, it managed to raise CAD5.5 billion ($4 billion) in new equity.
“Above all, today’s reported declines should reinforce the tremendous urgency for governments in Canada to take reasonable steps to safely reopen our country and restore economic activity,” the airline added.
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