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Thai Airways Scrambles to Protect its Aircraft from Being Seized

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Investigation Panel Reveals Mismanagement and Graft Sank Thai Airways

Thai Airways International (THAI) has petitioned courts in three countries to in efforts protects its aircraft from being seized by its creditors. The creditors have sought to seize Thai Airways assets including its aircraft operating scheduled flights.

A Thai government spokeswoman Narumon Pinyosinwat on Tuesday that cabinet was informed about the filing of debt-rehabilitation requests in foreign countries by Deputy Prime Minister Wissanu Krea-ngam. He chairs the government-appointed committee tasked with coordinating a solution to Thai Airways problems.

Ms. Narumon said the airline has so far petitioned the courts in Switzerland, Germany and Japan to stop aircraft from being seized. Also adding that the Thai Airways is in the middle of submitting a similar request in the United States. Where most of its its creditors are based. The petitions, if approved, will protect Thai Airways against assets seizure. Above all from having its aircraft being seized overseas.

Talks with Thai Airways creditors

Prior to the grounding of Thai Airways entire fleet at the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic, the airline flew to all of the countries whose courts it had petitioned — except the US.

Last month, the Central Bankruptcy Court in Thailand agreed to examine the airline’s restructuring request. The court is scheduled to decide on Aug 18th whether it will admit the case. This would effectively begin the restructuring process.

For the process to occur smoothly, talks with creditors will have commence prior to Aug 17th. Above all to limit the possibility of Thai Airways creditors from objecting to the plan when it is presented to the court, Ms Narumon said.

She also said an objection would delay and complicate the execution of the restructuring plan. Saying that this is an issue that the airline’s legal consultants are working hard to avoid.

The cabinet was told on Tuesday that Thai Airways racked up 12 billion baht in debt last year. Consequently bringing its total outstanding debt to 244 billion baht.

Restructuring  plans being drafted

According to the Bangkok Post, Thai Airways has fixed expenses amounting to between 5-6 billion baht a month. Without a liquidity boost, THAI will only have enough cash to survive until the end of the month.

The restructuring  plan is being drawn up by five members of the Thai Airways board. Which includes its former president, Piyasvasti Amranand, under the supervision of the bankruptcy court.

Along with EY Corporate Advisory Services, they will have “the authority and duty in managing the business and assets of the company”, the carrier told the Stock Exchange of Thailand at the end of last month.

On a different note, THAI has announced it is relaunching domestic and international flights next month.

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