LOT continues to resist additional funding

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Polish flag-carrier LOT is to hold back from seeking a second tranche of public financial support at least until mid-year.

The airline says it is continuing with implementation of its restructuring plan, and is seeing an improvement in its results, but says that achieving profitability next year will be an “immense challenge”.

LOT is to take delivery of a sixth Boeing 787-8 in the spring but says it will lease the aircraft to other carriers, or use it for charter services, in order to bring additional revenues to the airline.

Chief executive Sebastian Mikosz says maintain liquidity is a crucial target but that the airline has postponed application for further public funding until the end of June.

“The results – much better than expected – confirm that we are moving in the right direction,” he states.

But he says the company needs to strengthen its operational efficiency and expand its sources of ancillary revenues. LOT is the subject of a European state-aid probe arising from its restructuring and the allocation of financial support last year.

“The strategy is also designed as a starting point for future privatisation and for attracting investors,” the airline adds.

Poland’s government has been aiming to privatise LOT for several years but the process has been repeatedly put back.