Budget airline facing fight for survival after cash plea refused

The low-cost airline Norwegian is struggling to survive this winter after a plea for government support was rejected.

The airline, which operated out of several UK airports including Gatwick Edinburgh, Manchester and Birmingham, said it has “a very uncertain future” after being denied assistance.

It was alleged that cash assistance from the Norwegian government was “necessary to keep operations going” during the coronavirus pandemic.

Norwegian has rocked the UK long haul airline market in recent years by offering transatlantic flights at affordable prices.

The airline struggled to contain costs during its rapid expansion from a small domestic business to a global corporation and was forced to change its strategy two years ago to focus on profitability.

However, most aircraft are on the ground due to the drop in demand caused by the virus crisis.

In August, the airline announced that it would need more financial assistance to help weather the pandemic after reporting a loss of £ 442 million in the first six months of the year.

Jacob Schram, Managing Director of Norwegian, said: “The fact that our government has decided not to provide Norwegian with any further financial assistance is very disappointing and feels like a slap in the face to everyone at Norwegian fighting for the company Competitors receive billions of dollars from their respective governments. “

He added, “We could clearly see the results of our hard work from growth to profitability that began in 2018.

“With further support to get Norwegian through this unprecedented crisis for the aviation industry, we would emerge as a more sustainable and competitive airline with a new structure and improved operations.

“Without support, the way forward has become much more uncertain. However, we will do everything we can to weather this crisis. “

The airline employs 2,300 people in Norway and “several thousand” in other countries.

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