Louis Nastro | Reuters
United Airlines CEO said on Sunday that recovery for the aviation industry would have to wait until the Kovid-19 vaccine was approved and widely available, a milestone he said the company would reach by the end of Project 2021.
“I hope it happens soon, but our guess is that it’s the end of next year,” Scott Kirby said during an interview on CBS’s “Face the Nation”.
Kirby’s comments On infectious diseases one of the country’s leading experts, Drs. These are consistent with the predictions made by Anthony Fauci. But they contradict recent statements by President Donald Trump, who have suggested that the US will soon return to normal as it makes its case against Democrat Joe Biden for a second term before the November contest.
The coronovirus epidemic has devastated the airline industry, leading to business travel to a virtual standstill, preventing US residents from traveling internationally and curbing leisure trips.
Kirby said that withholding the new federal law, United would be forced to lay off 16,000 employees as of next month, following existing funds that were allocated in March. He said the company continues to burn $ 25 million per day amid 85% revenue declines.
“In a business like ours, demand is not going to come back until people feel safe around other people, and it’s going to take a vaccine,” Kirby said. “And that’s just the reality. Some businesses may already be fine, but in aviation and all the industries that we support, it’s going to take longer.”
A new Kovid-19 rescue bill is unlikely to emerge before October, as Republicans and Democrats face a stalemate to boost state aid for the unemployed and funding for municipalities. Last week, an attempt by the GOP to pass a so-called “skinny” relief bill failed in the Senate, where the party holds a majority.
“The reality is, without more government support for the entire economy, there are going to be more layoffs to come,” Kirby said.
The Kovid-19 vaccine approval and delivery time is uncertain, dependent on the results of clinical trials. US regulators are not yet allowed to consider any vaccine to be safe and effective, although there are many candidates at late stages in the process.
Trump has suggested that a vaccine may be approved before Election Day, which is 3 November, due to Democrats’ accusations that he is politicizing the scientific process. Trump said on Thursday that the US was “rounding the corner” on the epidemic.
Experts, including Fauci, have said that it would be possible for a vaccine to be approved by the end of the year, and possibly even by November, but warned that it would take longer for the country to return to normal.
In an interview on MSNBC on Friday, Fauci said that returning to normal “may well be in 2021, perhaps even in late 2021.”