French state could become biggest shareholder in Air France: minister

FILE PHOTO: The first Air France airliner’s Airbus A350 prepares to take off after a ceremony at the aircraft builder’s headquarters in Colomiers near Toulouse, France, September 27, 2019. REUTERS/Regis Duvignau

PARIS (Reuters) – The French state will be able to raise its shareholding in Air France to nearly 30% and become its biggest shareholder under a state-backed refinancing to help the airline through the COVID-19 crisis, French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire said on Tuesday

Under the plan approved by the European Commission, France will convert 3 billion euros ($3.54 billion) of already granted state aid into hybrid instruments and raise up to 1 bilion euros in new equity capital, Le Maire told France Inter radio.

($1 = 0.8467 euros)

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