The outbreak of COVID-19 has severely impacted the global aviation industry. The travel restrictions have forced airlines to ground planes and significantly reduce their workforce. In these exceptional circumstances the Latvian government took a decision to support the Latvian national airline airBaltic with a EUR 250 million investment.
The decision of the Latvian government to recapitalise airBaltic was approved by the European Commission. In its announcement the Commission stated that airBaltic plays a major role in the Latvian economy, notably because it ensures essential connectivity services within Latvia and from Latvia to other European and international destinations. The Commission also added that the company contributes significantly to foreign trade, as several Latvian businesses rely on its air services to connect with business centres in Europe and worldwide.
COBALT assisted airBaltic to align the investment process with the Commission’s state aid requirements, assisted the company in discussions with the shareholders and the Commission and drafted the necessary documentation in regard to the government’s investment.