Virgin Australia seeks government support of AUD 1.4bn to battle economic downturn caused by coronavirus

Virgin Australia has announced it is seeking AUD 1.4 billion (USD 865m) from the Australian government to combat economic fallout from COVID-19, the company said.

The Australian government announced on 18 March an aviation relief scheme worth AUD 715 million, comprising the waiver of certain fees and charges. A separate package for regional air travel, worth an initial AUD 198 million, was revealed the following week.

Virgin Australia, which has suspended most of its domestic and international flying, said it, like other companies, is already taking a range of measures to reduce costs, but support will be necessary for the industry to protect jobs and ensure Australia retains a strong, competitive aviation and tourism sector when the crisis ends.