Troubled Virgin Australia halts trading ahead of an announcement

Virgin Australia has halted trading of its stock as the airline waits to find out whether it will receive a federal government bailout to keep flying domestically.

The embattled airline requested an immediate halt to trading on the Australian Stock Exchange on Tuesday morning ahead of an announcement later in the day.

The trading halt comes amid reports Virgin and its biggest rival Qantas are closing in on a multi-million-dollar deal with the federal government to support domestic flights between capital cities.

‘Virgin Australia has requested a trading halt as it continues to consider ongoing issues with respect to financial assistance and restructuring alternatives,’ a Virgin Australia statement read on Tuesday.

‘This has arisen due to the unprecedented COVID-19 crisis which has particularly impacted the aviation sector.

‘Virgin Australia has been keeping the air fair in Australia for 20 years and we want to continue to provide a valuable service to all Australians, the 16,000 people employed directly and indirectly, and enable the broader economy to restart quickly once we emerge from this crisis.’

Virgin Australian has halted trading pending an announcement to the ASX. Pictured are grounded planes at Melbourne Airport on Sunday after the airline suspended domestic flights

Both airlines have been hard hit during the pandemic and there are fears Virgin could soon go into administration.

Virgin Australia chief executive Paul Scurrah has previously urged the federal government to help the airline stay afloat with a $1.4 billion loan.

Virgin cited ongoing discussions involving financial assistance and restructuring alternatives.

The airline also emailed its Velocity frequent flyer members to thank them for their support and understanding during the challenging times.

‘Velocity is set up in a way that safeguards member value by having a trustee that looks after the interests of members,’ the email says.


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