Airline boss Walsh condemns UK help for Flybe

Airline chief Willie Walsh has labelled Tuesday's (January 14) decision by the UK government to bailout rival airline Flybe 'a blatant misuse of public funds'.

Walsh - the outgoing head of British Airways' parent company, IAG - criticized the policy towards what is a privately-held company,

saying the taxpayer was picking up the tab for mismanagement of the airline.

Flybe, whose own parent company is part-owned by Richard Branson's Virgin Group was rescued after its shareholders agreed to invest more money,

while the British government provided support, reported to be involve the deferral of a tax bill.

UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson made an election promise to improve transport links outside of London and many of Flybe's routes link smaller cities to the capital.

And that message remains central to Transport Minister Grant Shapps.


"Hearing that air passenger duty will be reviewed was very interesting for them. Of course it will be reviewed for everyone and ensuring the way our regional connectivity works, that we can level up communities and our union it strengthened. That those individual regional airports are easy to get to and properly connected. Those are the sorts of things that were concerning Flybe."

The BBC also reported that Walsh has written his own Shapps, outlining his concerns about the Flybe deal.

Flybe has 68 aircraft in its fleet based at Exeter in south west England and thanks to this Government intervention it appears it will be able to remain airborne.