Emirates, one of the world’s biggest long-haul airlines, said it will raise debt to help it through the coronavirus pandemic and may have to take tougher measures as it faces the most difficult months in its history.
The UAE state-owned airline, which suspended regular passenger flights in March due to the virus outbreak that has shattered global travel demand, said that a recovery in travel was at least 18 months away.
It reported a 21% rise in profit for its financial year that ended on March 31, but said the pandemic had hit its fourth quarter performance and it would tap banks to raise debt in its first quarter to lessen the impact on cash flows by the virus.
The airline, which has been promised financial aid from its Dubai state owner, did not say how much it expected to raise.
“The COVID-19 pandemic will have a huge impact on our 2020-21 performance,” Chairman Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed said in a statement.
“We continue to take aggressive cost management measures, and other necessary steps to safeguard our business, while planning for business resumption.”