Berlin links Lufthansa rescue to Airbus orders


Negotiations on German state aid for the airline Lufthansa are delayed. Berlin wants the group to fulfill its orders with Airbus, reports the Handelsblatt newspaper.

A deal in which Lufthansa

In exchange for a 20 percent equity stake, the German state would receive 9 billion euros on Thursday, it seemed only a matter of hours. But talks are now delayed, writes the German business newspaper Handelsblatt. The Merkel government would demand that the airline fulfill its orders with the European aircraft manufacturer Airbus.

For Lufthansa, that would mean that in the coming years, some 5.5 out of the 9 billion euros in state aid will actually go to Airbus.

flows. That is the amount of the orders that the company had placed with Airbus before the outbreak of the corona crisis.

Lufthansa CEO Carsten Spohr had counted on him to largely postpone orders with Airbus and the American Boeing. In recent weeks he has negotiated this with both companies.


The world’s two largest aircraft manufacturers are facing a huge financial pit as the global aviation market shuts down. It seems that with the support of Lufthansa, Berlin is trying to kill two birds with one stone by also keeping Airbus straight. The German state is an important minority shareholder of Airbus Group, formerly EADS, with almost 11 percent of the capital. France also owns 11 percent, Spain 4.1 percent. Almost three quarters of the shares are listed on the stock exchange.

5.5 billion

Orders with Airbus
Before the outbreak of the corona crisis, Lufthansa had ordered aircraft worth 5.5 billion euros from Airbus.

According to Handelsblatt, Lufthansa’s board meeting, which would normally meet on Friday on the deal, has been moved to Monday. That gives both parties another weekend to work out a compromise. Officially, neither Lufthansa nor the government wanted to comment.

The German union UFO regrets that, according to her, the agreement is not aimed at saving jobs. “Our members were willing to accept submissions, but only in exchange for job retention,” said UFO spokesman Nicoley Baublies.

Brussels Airlines

As long as there is no deal on German aid, it is also difficult for the Belgian government to land with an agreement on Brussels Airlines, which is a subsidiary of Lufthansa. There, too, both parties are not in agreement about the conditions for state aid. The main stumbling block remains that the government wants shares in exchange for money, while Lufthansa does not want a minority political shareholder.

According to a source on the file, instead of using shares with no voting rights, such as profit certificates or convertible loans, it is considered. That way, the government can make a financial return on its investment, but it would not be at the controls of the airline.

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