IAG has signed a $1.76 billion revolving credit facility with a syndicate of banks, using take-off and landing slots at both London Heathrow and Gatwick airports as collateral.

The three-year facility, which contains two one-year extension periods at the lenders’ discretion, is available to IAG’s Aer LingusBritish Airways and Iberia subsidiaries. Each airline has separate borrower limit.

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In addition to Heathrow and Gatwick slots, credit will be secured against unencumbered aircraft assets, states IAG in a 23 March regulatory filing.

IAG also disclosed that British Airways has cancelled a US-dollar facility that was due to expire on 23 June 2021. The facility had $786 million undrawn and available at 31 December 2020. A further €400 million ($475 million) of facilities are due to expire undrawn by the end of this month.

“As a net result, the group’s total facilities have increased by nearly €400 million, and their weighted average availability period has extended by at least 1.5 years compared to previously,” says IAG.

The airline group estimates that it will have €10.3 billion of liquidity by 31 March. This includes €7.8 billion in cash, cash equivalents and interest-bearing deposits, €1.7 billion of undrawn general facilities – including the revolving credit facility announced today – and €800 million of committed aircraft financing facilities.