Airlines in the Philippines are asking for credit relief and a longer reprieve from fees, saying government intervention is needed as the industry faces an “existential threat.”

Philippine Airlines Inc., Cebu Air Inc., the local unit of AirAsia Group Bhd and other members of the nation’s Air Carriers Association or ACAP halted all passenger operations for a month until April 14 on the government’s lockdown order. This translates to 30,000 canceled flights affecting 5 million passengers.

“Given these extraordinary times where the survival of the domestic airline industry is at stake, ACAP member airlines urgently appeal for timely government intervention,” it said in a letter to government officials including Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez. Airlines have “enormous fixed costs” for their aircraft and equipment and have “no revenue flow seen for the next several weeks or even months,” it said.

Airlines are seeking a credit guarantee from the government to back their loans to remove banks’ aversion to the risks of the industry, an emergency credit line for 6 months and a longer-term facility to ensure recovery. Banks have tightened credit and cut off access to undrawn lines even without defaults, the group said.

Airlines could lose $252 billion in revenue from passenger operations this year because of the pandemic, according to the International Air Transport Association. That has prompted governments all over to support their airline industries.

In the Philippines, the airlines said they’re not seeking a “handout at the expense of taxpayers” but some support will help them recover. The group requested a full waiver of all navigational and airport charges, including office rentals and land leases, until the end of the year. The earlier deferral of landing, take-off and parking fees was no longer enough, it said.

The government will ask the central bank to support lenders that aid their clients, including airlines, Dominguez said in a mobile-phone message when asked to comments on carriers’ requests. In a statement earlier on Tuesday, Dominguez said that assistance to businesses will have “to take a backseat” as the government prioritizes aiding the poor.