• The Associated Press

  • SHARE

Japan’s top air carriers, Japan Airlines System Corp. and All Nippon Airways Co., are asking for emergency loans from a government-run bank to help them through drops in travel in the aftermath of the war in Iraq and the SARS epidemic in Asia.

The carriers and the Development Bank of Japan said Tuesday the amount of the aid package was still undecided. But the bank said loans with lower-than-usual interest rates are being considered.

Japan Airlines System spokeswoman Yoshie Ohtaka said the scale of the loans is likely to be similar to those received following the terror attacks in the United States on Sept. 11, 2001, which slashed airline revenue and sent international travel plunging.

The bank then extended 240 billion yen in emergency aid to Japanese airlines.

Losses for fiscal 2002 at ANA widened to 28 billion yen from a loss of 9.5 billion yen a year ago.

Japan Airlines System posted a profit for fiscal 2002 but expects a loss of 43 billion yen for this fiscal year.