German official sees Lufthansa bailout within reach

An aerial view shows air planes of Lufthansa sitting on the tarmac at the Berlin Brandenburg International Airport in Schoenefeld, Germany. EPA-EFE/OLIVER LANG

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The Berlin government is likely to reach a deal with Brussels on a $10 billion government bailout of stricken airline Lufthansa, senior government official Thomas Jarzombek said on Friday, but stressed the German airline needed fair treatment.

“Offers are on the table and we have a long record of finding agreement eventually,” Jarzombek, who coordinates aviation on behalf of the cabinet, told broadcaster RTL/ntv in a morning show.

“I am confident that this will also be the case here.”

The deal was thrown into doubt on Wednesday after Lufthansa’s supervisory board refused to accept the conditions attached by Brussels to the aid.

The board did not agree with EU requirements that Lufthansa permanently give up take-off and landing slots at Frankfurt and Munich airports, where it commands a two-thirds market share.

Jarzombek said Germany would clarify the necessary scope of conditions tied to the deal, comparing these with how Lufthansa rivals such as SAS or KLM/Air France were treated.

Via Reuters

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