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The major crisis in aviation provoked by the coronavirus pandemic has brought the industry to almost a halt. Global travel restrictions, most of aircraft grounded, flights limited to only essential services.
Airlines supported by respective governments are making all the efforts to stay afloat and come out of this crisis at least able to re-launch operations. Nevertheless, some losses are inevitable.
A severe blow has hit Norwegian Group. Nearly all the operations of the carrier has been suspended since the beginning of the pandemic. Although the airline does not fly, “the costs for air crew remain”.
The company said it did everything possible to avoid harsh decisions. However, not always things go the way we want and expect.
Flight and cabin crew working for Norwegian in Scandinavia are hired by the subsidiaries in the Norwegian Group. Therefore, four of these subsidiaries, with 1,571 pilots and 3,134 cabin crew in total, have been left with no other choice but to file for bankruptcy:
- Norwegian Pilot Services Sweden AB
- Norwegian Pilot Services Denmark ApS
- Norwegian Cabin Services Denmark ApS
- Norwegian Air Resources Denmark LH ApS.
The lack of necessary financial support from Swedish and Danish governments made Norwegian unable to come up with more protective measures.
“The impact the Coronavirus has had on the airline industry is unprecedented. We have done everything we can to avoid making this last-resort decision and we have asked for access to government support in both Sweden and Denmark”, said Jacob Schram, CEO of Norwegian.
In a statement, the company explained that “in Norway, there are efficient furlough opportunities which means that the government pays for all salary related costs throughout the duration of the furlough period. Unfortunately, there is not the equivalent coverage in Sweden or Denmark schemes“.
This way about 700 pilots and 1,300 cabin crew based in Norway, France and Italy are not affected.
Norwegian also provided that it has notified OSM Aviation about cancelled the crew provision agreements with several of its jointly owned OSM Aviation subsidiaries.