Virgin Aust seeking govt rescue package

Marco Green
April 1, 2020

An ASX announcement added that this was "subject to approval by the Virgin Australia Holdings board and the Australian Government" and "may or may not include conversion to equity in certain circumstances".

"Outcomes of the review include plans to consolidate our domestic and short-haul global pilot workforce and the proposed closure of Tigerair Australia's Melbourne pilot base", a Virgin Australian spokesman told AAP.

The carrier, Australia's second biggest after Qantas, wants a rescue package of up to $1.4 billion, The Australian reported on Tuesday.

Following a mass shortage of toilet paper throughout Australia in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, the airline has announced they will be rescuing thousands of toilet paper rolls from its grounded aircraft and donating them to vulnerable members of the community.

It could involve the Government becoming a part-owner.

"I've been in close contact with leaders of the business community including the aviation sector's (Virgin boss) Paul Scurrah and (Qantas chief) Alan Joyce", he told ABC radio.

The Qantas CEO has been an outspoken critic of Virgin Australia in recent times, suggesting that poorly managed airlines such as Virgin should not receive government assistance.

Mr Frydenberg said the transport of freight and people was important to the economy.

'The COVID-19 pandemic has required us to temporarily reduce our flying schedule and ground 125 aircraft, which means there is a lot of toilet paper not being used, and we want to ease some of the stress that so many Australians are now facing, ' Virgin Australia General Manager Sarah Adam said.

Virgin is in a financially weaker position than its larger rival Qantas Airways Ltd and has said it would put 8,000 workers on leave and cut more than 1,000 jobs permanently as it grounds the majority of its fleet due to a drop in demand.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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