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Vietnam to offer $173 mln interest-free loan to help troubled flag carrier

HANOI, March 10 (Reuters) - Vietnam’s central bank said on Wednesday it is planning to provide an interest-free loan of up to 4 trillion dong ($173.54 million) to Vietnam Airlines to help the flag carrier weather the wide impact of the coronavirus pandemic.

The loan will be provided through local financial institutions within this year, the State Bank of Vietnam said in a statement, adding that it is seeking opinions from related authorities over the plan.

Vietnam Airlines, 86% owned by the government, reported net losses of 11.1 trillion dong ($481.52 million) last year, compared with net profit of 2.54 trillion dong in 2019. ($1 = 23,050 dong) (Reporting by Khanh Vu; Editing by Martin Petty)

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