KLM CEO says company will repay 3.4 billion euro coronavirus loans

FILE PHOTO: Pieter Elbers, President and CEO of KLM, addresses the audience during a meeting of the International Air Transport Association (IATA) in Cancun, Mexico June 5, 2017. REUTERS/Victor Ruiz Garcia

AMSTERDAM (Reuters) - The chief executive of Air France-KLM’s Dutch arm said on Friday the company would repay the 3.4 billion euros ($4.0 billion) in emergency government-backed loans it was taking on during the coronavirus crisis, rather than needing fresh equity.

“I read all the suggestions and the speculations about this, but we’ve agreed a loan with the government and banks,” Pieter Elbers said on a call. The Dutch government is backing KLM’s bailout on condition it cuts emissions by 50% by 2030.

“We are going to make a plan to make sure we pay off those loans,” Elbers said, adding that the environmental goal was attainable.

Reporting by Toby Sterling; Editing by Edmund Blair