Japan Airlines' (JAL) net loss may balloon to about 500 billion yen ($5.5 billion) for the year to next March as the struggling carrier, Asia's largest by revenue, plans to book hefty restructuring charges, the Yomiuri newspaper reported on Thursday.

The forecast, which is almost eight times bigger than the firms' own earlier projected loss, has been included in a new turnaround plan being put together by a government-appointed task force and presented to creditor banks, the paper said.

JAL's operating loss is likely to be around 200 billion yen, compared with the loss of 59 billion yen in the carrier's earlier estimate, due weak air travel demand amid the economic downturn, the paper said.

It also plans to book special charges for an early retirement programme and the disposal of large aircraft, the paper said.

($1=90.92 Yen)

(Reporting by Taiga Uranaka)