A court in Thailand on Monday (14 September) approved the restructuring of Thai Airways, which is billions of dollars in debt and struggling to survive the coronavirus tourism crash, according to media reports. The kingdom, once a majority shareholder in Thai, reduced its stake in May and went to the insolvency court to resolve the airline’s debt, which totalled about US$10.6 billion by the end of June.
“The problem that caused debtor’s financial situation is not from its business but from the rapid change in aviation, particularly the impact from COVID-19,” Bangkok’s Central Bankruptcy Court said. The court approved Thai’s request for a rehabilitation plan, which would see its debt and company organisation restructured. Thai said after the ruling that it would propose that plan by the end of the year.
“More than half of creditors supported restructuring,” the airline’s acting president, Chansin Treenuchagron, told reporters. “We will be in negotiations with creditors this quarter and a plan will be ready by the first quarter of next year.” After three hearings, some creditors withdrew their opposition to the restructuring following negotiations with the airline.