The Taiwanese government will offer financial aid to its carriers – in the form of subsidies and loans – to help cushion the financial blow from the coronavirus.
Among the measures the MInistry of Transportation and Communications (MOTC) rolled out was the offering of loans to help airlines with normal operations. The ministry did not indicate the quantum of loan available to the carriers.
Taiwanese carriers can also apply for subsidies from the government for expenses incurred while implementing prevention measures against the coronavirus outbreak. These can be backdated to 15 January, the ministry adds.
Media reports, citing MOTC deputy minister Huang Yu-Lin, state that the entire plan is expected to cost the government about NT$30 billion ($994 million). Taiwan will also offer to waive or lower landing and parking fees for its carriers, Huang adds.
The move comes as Taiwan’s six major carriers – including China Airlines and EVA Air – have lobbied the government for assistance to tide through this period.
Taiwan’s Civil Aviation Administration also notes that international passenger traffic into Taiwan had been halved for February, following softening travel demand and travel restrictions imposed.
In recent days, governments around the world have stepped in to provide their stricken aviation industries a financial lifeline.