Israel's El Al Airlines sees $30 million drop in first-quarter revenue on coronavirus

FILE PHOTO: An Israel El Al airlines plane is seen after its landing following its inaugural flight between Tel Aviv and Nice at Nice international airport, France, April 4, 2019. REUTERS/Eric Gaillard/File Photo

JERUSALEM (Reuters) - El Al Israel Airlines ELAL.TA expects a $30 million drop in first quarter revenue stemming from the impact of the coronavirus outbreak, but much of that should be offset by lower operating expenses, the company said on Wednesday.

Israel’s flag carrier on Jan. 30 suspended flights to Beijing until late March, following the lead of other airlines that stopped or scaled back flights to China as cases of the coronavirus have risen.

El Al said the revenue loss was mostly from flights to Asia and that it was talking with authorities in Israel and around the world to continuously assess the situation.

Reporting by Ari Rabinovitch; Editing by Tova Cohen