25pc of EU airports face insolvency unless air travel recovers by 2021
ONE in four European airports face insolvency if air travel fails to recover by the end of the year, report New York's Air Cargo World
ONE in four European airports face insolvency if air travel fails to recover by the end of the year, report New York's Air Cargo World.
Airports Council International Europe (ACI) predicts that 193 out of 740 airports in the region will soon struggle to pay their bills while government-imposed quarantine requirements remain in place.
The airfields in doubt are mainly smaller, regional hubs but still account for about 277,000 jobs, said Brussels-based ACI. In Germany, Europe's largest economy, Paderborn airport filed for insolvency after passenger numbers fell 85 per cent.
'The figures published today paint a dramatically bleak picture,' said ACI director general Olivier Jankovec. 'Eight months into the crisis all of Europe's airports are burning through cash to remain open, with revenues far from covering the cost of operations.'
Airlines and airports are among the companies hardest hit by the pandemic, and both industries are calling for an international testing agreement that prevents passengers from having to isolate for weeks at their destination - a factor that's putting off many people from travelling.
Such a system, which would still require passengers to provide a negative test before departure, could reopen lucrative transatlantic routes and is soon set to reconnect Hong Kong and Singapore.
'Governments' current imposition of quarantines rather than testing is bringing Europe's airports closer to the brink with every day that passes,' said Mr Jankovec.
European passenger numbers fell 73 per cent year-on-year in September, meaning the region has lost 1.29 billion travellers since January.