Malawi’s flag carrier airline, Malawian Airlines is looking for a MWK385 million kwacha (USD527,000) bailout from the government to keep paying its staff as it struggles with finances amidst the coronavirus pandemic, which has grounded its aircraft, Swiss airline intelligence provider, ch-aviation, has revealed.
In an interview with the Malawian The Nation newspaper, the airline’s finance director, Wube Atlaw, said the airline, a joint venture between Malawi Government and Ethiopian Airlines, had asked government for the bailout to pay salaries and aircraft lease fees for the two airplanes they operate.
“It is true that we have been having meetings with the Ministry of Finance on the possible bailout, especially on two areas thus salaries and aircraft fees from April to August,” expressed Atlaw to the paper.
“We are still waiting for an answer from government on our proposal. Presently business is not usual because of travel restrictions.”
The airline employs 86 people, incurring a monthly wage bill of K77 million.
Malawian Airlines began suspending flights due to coronavirus on March 25, 2020 then subsequently grounded its fleet.