KQ: COVID-19 restrictions have cost airline Kshs 10B

Kenya Airways – KQ officials say implementing social distancing post COVID-19 would make ticket prices very expensive making flying uneconomical and unsustainable. Officials told shareholders during the annual general meeting Friday that the airline is optimistic that the government will ease travel restrictions next month.

They however called on authorities not to impose social distancing requirements, noting that it will make air tickets very expensive.

The national carrier says it has so far lost 10 billion shillings to due COVID-19 related travel restrictions and the amount could hit 50 billion shillings if flights are grounded for the rest of the year.

Globally, airlines have been returning to service starting with domestic flights as the industry awaits global service next month.

KQ passenger aircrafts have been parked at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport with the airline surviving on cargo and chartered services since March following the grounding of passenger services by the government in efforts to contain the spread of coronavirus.

Also read https://www.kbc.co.ke/kenya-airways-to-use-passenger-aircrafts-for-cargo-operations/

In April the airline made a bailout request of five billion shillings to service aircrafts and recurrent expenses.

Meanwhile, exports are rebounding driven by tea and horticulture as key source markets ease travel restrictions.

In a virtual post Monetary Policy Committee briefing, Central Bank Governor Dr. Patrick Njoroge said a diversified economy, product diversification and strong domestic consumption will be Kenya’s lifeline as it recovers.

Dr. Njoroge has however warned that the rebound does not mean that the worst is over as there could be risks from effects of the second wave of the coronavirus pandemic on the global economy.

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