Israel's El Al Asks Government For $100 Million In State Aid

By i24
Posted on 09/23/21 | News Source: i24

The Covid pandemic is hitting Israel's airlines and travel sector especially hard

Israeli airline El Al announced on Thursday that they requested $100 million in state aid from the government for losses suffered through compliance with enacted Covid restrictions.

Earlier this year, El Al let go of almost a third of the airline's staff in order to receive $210 million in government assistance. Despite previous financial backing, the company is imploring Israel's leadership to do more.

El Al and two other local airlines have written an appeal to Prime Minister Naftali Bennett. 

"The Israeli aviation sector is perched above a slippery slope, and there is still doubt whether Israeli aviation companies can survive the crisis without government assistance," the company heads of El Al and other airlines detailed in a letter to the leader.

The parties asked Bennett to establish an emergency meeting on the matter.

El Al's CEO, Avigal Soreq, also wrote separately to the Finance Ministry regarding payment of reparations to the airline. 

In his message, Soreq demanded "immediate compensation for $100 million for damages caused to El Al due to decisions by the state," Reuters reported.

Earlier this month, Israel's Finance Ministry detailed a recovery plan for businesses, offering $50 million in aid if company owners would match the amount. 

In their message to Bennett, the airline heads expressed disapproval of the plan, and also called for the abolishment of specific Covid regulations which hurt the travel industry most.