Passage of the $2.2 trillion Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act by the U.S. House of Representatives on Friday will almost surely secure President Donald Trump’s signature, but how much of the funds go to each individual airline and aerospace company and under what conditions remains a matter for the Treasury Department to decide.
The Coronavirus impact on the aviation Industry
The U.S House of Representatives today approved the $2 trillion relief package that provides billions in loans and grants for aviation businesses and airports. House passage, by voice vote, followed Senate approval also this week, sending the measure, the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act (H.R.743), to the President’s desk for his signature.
To help combat the spread of Covid-19, Duncan Aviation will host a free webinar on Friday, April 3, on aircraft cabin disinfection methods, as well as the steps the company is taking to protect the health and safety of its employees and customers. The seminar, which will be held at 2 p.m.
Those looking for silver linings in the dark clouds over business aviation this week found themselves squinting to see any. If the Covid-19 pandemic’s repercussions for the industry still seemed ambiguous at the end of last week, there is now little doubt that the sector’s engines are spooling down and the industry is bracing for a period of inactivity. The only remaining questions seem to be for how long this might last and whether it could prove to be more than just a temporary interruption to what until now has been a rising tide for business aviation.
Life is completely different now. Covid-19 has required all of us to make significant adjustments in our daily routines. People are working from home. Kids are not in school. As my family and neighbors are stocking up, locking down, and staying home, I’m preparing for my next flight. As I begin to pack my bags, I realize that flying is different now.
Social distancing and good hygiene, such as hand washing, are two practices that can help contain the spread of coronavirus and “flatten the curve.” This is all for the greater good, and we should all do our part.
But flight crews, in addition to health and safety concerns, now face significant logistical and operational challenges. The realities of a global pandemic include restrictive travel advisories, shelter-in-place orders, and air traffic disruptions; each requiring a lot more planning, preparation, and patience to operate safely during this crisis.
The entire world and aviation system are under stress. At a human level, crew members might become more stressed. In multi-crew operations, pilots need to check on one another. In addition to keeping their families safe and healthy, many now face economic uncertainties.
Flying is different now. The job is much harder now. It will continue to be different and become more challenging until Covid-19 is contained. For now, take care of the details and be patient.
British engine manufacturer Rolls-Royce plans to “significantly reduce all but essential activity” within its UK civil aerospace facilities for one week staring midnight on Friday, while continuing to pay its workers. Its civil aero-engine business, based primarily in Derby, employs some 15,000 people.
The company said in a statement the move would enable it “to confirm the effectiveness of the measures taken to date and enhance our processes in order to sustain modified operations and activities over a longer period.
Boeing stands to qualify for billions of dollars in aid from the U.S. government as part of a $2 trillion coronavirus aid package, including a $17 billion carve-out for companies deemed essential to the country’s national security, but the conditions might prove too unpalatable for CEO David Calhoun. The Boeing boss told the Fox television network that the company would reject any money tied to the government taking an equity stake in the aerospace giant.
The FAA has issued four exemptions from certain recurrent and training requirements that are designed to ensure that Part 135 operators can continue to fly during the Covid-19 crisis. Coming at the request of industry groups including the National Air Transportation Association and Airlines for America and backed by NBAA, the exemptions were issued on March 25 without publication in the Federal Register.
Singapore Airlines (SIA) expects to raise as much as S$15 billion ($10.36 billion) through the sale of S$5.3 billion in new shares and up to a further S$9.7 billion through 10-year mandatory convertible bonds (MCBs), the company announced Thursday. SIA has also arranged a S$4 billion bridge loan facility with DBS Bank to support its near-term liquidity requirements as cash drain accelerates amid the Covid-19 crisis.
The Covid-19 crisis is rapidly heading to the point where business aviation stops in the UK, according to the British Business and General Aviation Association (BBGA). “The expectation is that by the end of the month everything will be grounded,” said association CEO Marc Bailey.