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LONDON: IAG, owner of British Airways and other European airlines, posted on Friday a net loss of 1.1 billion euros ($1.3 billion) in the first quarter as the coronavirus pandemic grounded planes.

It was a reduction, however, on the company’s net loss of 1.68 billion euros in the first three months of 2020 as Covid took off, IAG said in an earnings statement.

It added that group revenue collapsed 79 percent to 968 million euros in the first quarter of this year.

Passenger numbers dived 87 percent compared to a year earlier at the company that owns also Spanish airline Iberia and Ireland’s Aer Lingus.

“We’re doing everything in our power to emerge in a stronger competitive position,” IAG chief executive Luis Gallego said in the earnings statement.

Its earnings update came a day after rival Air France-KLM posted a net loss totalling 1.5 billion euros for the first quarter.

IAG said it would not be providing 2021 profit guidance “given the uncertainty over the timing of the lifting of government travel restrictions and the continued impact and duration of Covid-19”.

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