Exclusive: Airbus signals government help needed if crisis lasts months - sources

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[March 17, 2020]    FRANKFURT/BERLIN (Reuters) - Europe's Airbus <AIR.PA> has signaled that some government support may be needed if the coronavirus crisis lasts for several months, two people familiar with the matter said.

An Airbus assembly plant in Seville, southern Spain, February 21, 2020. REUTERS/Marcelo del Pozo/File Photo

The prospect of a worst-case scenario in which state help becomes necessary was raised in crisis talks on Monday between Germany's economy ministry and aviation industry representatives including Franco-German-led Airbus, they said.

The type of any government support, and how widely it would be distributed, was not discussed in detail, but most likely options include efforts to promote liquidity such as state-guaranteed credits, one source said.

"We are having regular dialogues with our home nation governments which are all non-public in nature which is why we do not comment on them," an Airbus spokesman said. The German economy ministry did not respond to a request for comment.

(This story has been refiled to read "sources" in headline)

(Reporting by Ilona Wissenbach, Christian Kraemer and Klaus Lauer; additional reporting by Tim Hepher; editing by Jason Neely)

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