FILE PHOTO: Airplanes of German carrier Lufthansa are parked at the Berlin Schoenefeld airport, amid the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Schoenefeld, Germany, May 26, 2020. REUTERS/Fabrizio Bensch/File Photo
FRANKFURT (Reuters) – Lufthansa’s (LHAG.DE) supervisory board said on Monday it had approved a 9 billion euro ($10 billion) government bailout that will force the German airline to give some of its prized landing slots to rivals.
“We recommend that our shareholders follow this path, even if it requires them to make substantial contributions to stabilizing their company,” Karl-Ludwig Kley, Lufthansa’s supervisory board chairman, said in a statement.
“It must be clearly stated, however, that Lufthansa is facing a very difficult road ahead.”
The approval marks the latest step in the complex state rescue of Lufthansa, which has been badly hit by the coronavirus pandemic and its impact on the travel sector, and follows the approval of the group’s executive board last week.
The bailout still needs to be approved by regulators and Lufthansa’s shareholders, which are scheduled to meet virtually at an extraordinary general meeting on June 25.
Under the plans, the German government will take a 20% stake in Lufthansa as well as two seats on its supervisory board. Lufthansa said it would publish first-quarter results on June 3.
($1 = 0.8998 euros)
Reporting by Christoph Steitz; Editing by Susan Fenton and Jan Harvey