About 200 airports in Europe are on the verge of bankruptcy
ACI EUROPE (Airports Council International Europe) announced that due to the crisis that followed COVID-19 pandemic, almost 200 airports are in danger of going bankrupt if the number of passengers does not increase by the end of the year.
The 193 monitored airports provide 277 jobs and contribute 12.4 billion euros to Europe's GDP. If these airports went bankrupt, this would mean the collapse of the air transport system. For this reason, the governments of the countries must provide the necessary financial support.
For September, the data show a 73% decrease in the number of passengers in Europe compared to the same month last year. Specifically, this means a decrease of 172.5 million passengers for September 2020 compared to September 2019. And since the beginning of the pandemic until now, the number of passengers has decreased by over 1.29 billion.
In mid-October, the number of passengers was down by 75% compared to October 2019. Thus, the number of those who decided to fly during a pandemic decreased, in total, by 80 percent and the trend is decreasing.
The airports at risk of going bankrupt are mainly regional and small ones. Even major European airports and hubs are not immune to the financial crisis. Paris airport traffic decreased by 74,5% in September 2020 compared to the same period last year. Munich Airport has seen a 70% drop in passenger numbers.
Europe's 20 largest airports have reduced operating costs, laid off thousands of skilled workers, but had to borrow to cope with the crisis. Debts amounted to 16 billion euros, the equivalent of 60% of their revenues in a normal year.