Aviation & Airports
Australian airline Virgin Australia today suspended all its international flights from 30 March to 14 June in response to the coronavirus pandemic that has affected global air travel. It will also make deeper cuts to domestic capacity of 50pc to all services until 14 June.
The latest cuts follow the Australian government's latest travel advice in response to the coronavirus that nobody travel overseas and for any Australians overseas to return home as soon as possible, where they will then have to self-isolate for 14 days.
Virgin on 13 March had previously unveiled cuts of 8pc for its international capacity in the second half of the 2019-20 fiscal year to 30 June, while cutting domestic capacity by 5pc for the second half of 2019-20.
Australian national airline Qantas has cut its international flight capacity by 90pc until at least the end of May.
The moves by Virgin and Qantas is expected to have a significant impact on Australia's jet fuel demand, which held relatively stable during January, the latest month for which data is available.
The Australian federal government said it will provide A$715mn ($430mn) in financial support to Australia's airline sector through the waiving of a number of government charges on the airline sector, such as aviation fuel excise, air services charges and aviation security charges.
By Kevin Morrison