By Helen Massy-Beresford
Paris Orly Airport (ORY) will close temporarily to commercial flights starting March 31, leaving the few remaining flights operating to/from Paris at Charles de Gaulle Airport (CDG).
French officials said the move was necessary as the country battles the COVID-19 pandemic.
Secretary of state for transport Jean-Baptise Djebbari signed a decree authorizing ADP, the Paris airports operator, to suspend commercial operations from ORY at 11 p.m. local time on March 31.
ADP said CDG would remain accessible to state aircraft or emergency medical or evacuation flights or freighter services linked to managing the crisis, subject to authorization by the transport ministry.
In 2019, CDG handled 76.2 million passengers and ORY 31.9 million. ADP expects an approximately €800 million ($890 million) hit to its 2020 earnings because of the coronavirus crisis and will not be able to meet its long-term strategic goals.
Most French airlines have suspended all or nearly all of their flights, but a few services are still operating to maintain vital transport links to overseas territories, to repatriate passengers or transport essential supplies.
Photo credit: Groupe ADP