The Canada Business Emergency Finance Corporation (CEEFC) announced that Sunwing Vacations and Sunwing Airlines have accessed $ 375 million in cash to protect jobs in Canada’s airline industry through a loan in the framework of the Large Employers Emergency Funding Mechanism (LEEFF).
Sunwing Airlines and Sunwing Vacations together provide nearly 3,000 Canadians with full-time jobs.
Canadian airlines have been in talks with Ottawa since Nov. 8 over sector funding, and this appears to be the first such announcement. Air Canada and Transat officials said last night they had no similar news to report at this time. WestJet officials could not be reached for immediate comment.
Sunwing has agreed to maintain an account with money received from customers for trips that have been canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This account will be maintained until the conclusion of broader government discussions with the airline industry and until a policy is established for the treatment of these prepaid amounts.
LEEFF loans provide bridge financing to Canada’s largest employers whose needs during the pandemic are not being met by private market financing. It provides large Canadian employers with access to credit to preserve jobs and continue to operate during these difficult times.
Other LEEFF funding requests are currently under consideration. To protect the financial interests of taxpayers, rigorous due diligence and the cooperation of existing lenders are necessary.
CEEFC maintains a list of approved LEEFF loans, which can be viewed at https://www.ceefc-cfuec.ca/approved-loans/.
The key terms of the LEEFF loan facility can be found at https://www.ceefc-cfuec.ca/leeff-factsheet/.
A full press release can be found here.