LONDON – After months of deliberation and delay, Air Canada has finally got its hands on a government aid package, which will improve the position of the carrier financially.
This deal is valued at C$5.879 billion and was secured through the Large Employer Emergency Financing Facility.
President and CEO of Air Canada Michael Rousseau stated that this “provides a significant layer of insurance” to the carrier, especially when it comes to keeping more jobs in the airline.
Last year, the carrier had to cut 20,000 jobs from its workforce due to the continued effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and posted a yearly loss of C$-4.647 billion, which compared to a profit of C$1.476 billion in 2019, highlighted the financial downturn of the carrier.
This deal has certain conditions laid out by the Canadian government. They are as follows:
- Regional routes that the carrier was operating by themselves or third-parties must resume.
- Air Canada must take delivery of 33 Airbus A220s, to safeguard Canadian jobs in the Airbus plant in Mirabel.
- Same condition applies to Boeing 737 MAXs, as they will create and sustain jobs too.
The airline had to defer deliveries of the A220 and 737 MAX to 2022, with Air Canada cancelling orders for 12 A220-300s, 11 MAX9s and deferring delivery of the final 16 aircraft to 2023.
This is significantly good news for Air Canada, especially due to the fact that the Canadian Government has finally established an aid package.
With that in mind, we will begin to maybe see more airlines in Canada receive this level of support, but bearing in mind how long it took originally, this could take a while.