Amount of Blocked Airline Funds Rising: IATA

Amount of Blocked Airline Funds Rising: IATA

Various governments have locked $394 million in the last six months

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) warned that the amount of airline funds for repatriation being blocked by governments has risen by more than 25% ($394 million) in the last six months.

Total funds blocked now tally at close to $2 billion. IATA calls on governments to remove all barriers to airlines repatriating their revenues from ticket sales and other activities, in line with international agreements and treaty obligations.

IATA is also renewing its calls on Venezuela to settle the $3.8 billion of airline funds that have been blocked from repatriation since 2016 when the last authorization for limited repatriation of funds was allowed by the Venezuelan government.

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Willie Walsh, IATA’s Director General said: “Preventing airlines from repatriating funds may appear to be an easy way to shore up depleted treasuries, but ultimately the local economy will pay a high price.

"No business can sustain providing service if they cannot get paid and this is no different for airlines.

"Air links are a vital economic catalyst. Enabling the efficient repatriation of revenues is a critical for any economy to remain globally connected to markets and supply chains.”

Airline funds are being blocked from repatriation in more than 27 countries and territories.

The top five markets with blocked funds (excluding Venezuela) are: 

  • Nigeria: $551 million 

  • Pakistan: $225 million 

  • Bangladesh: $208 million 

  • Lebanon: $144 million 

  • Algeria: $140 million 

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