Thailand’s Central Bankruptcy Court has approved Thai Airways International business rehabilitation plan during the latest hearing that followed an earlier court ruling.
The court’s approval opens the door for the airline’s Plan Administers to set about securing a loan of around THB50 billion to boost working capital to resume commercial operations. Efforts are likely to focus on sourcing the loan from both the government and private financial institutions.
After considering two objections and adopting the Planner’s clarification, including the official receiver’s opinion on various issues, the Central Bankruptcy Court granted an order to approve the Rehabilitation Plan. It also included amended clauses to the plan following their acceptance during the creditors’ meeting on 19 May 2021.
As a result, the Plan Administrator nominations whose names were proposed and approved in the Business Rehabilitation Plan are now legally authorised to carry out the airline’s rehabilitation based on the court ruling.
The empowered Plan Administrators responsible for executing the Plan are Piyasvasti Amranand; Pornchai Thiravet; Siri Jirapongphan; Kraisorn Barameeauychai, and Chansin Treenuchagron.
The court ruling allows THAI to continue airline operations, but it must strictly comply with the business rehabilitation proceedings and Plan.
Plan Administrators face the tough task of restoring the airline operations post Covid-19, rebuilding confidence with travel consumers and most importantly, honouring agreements with creditors based on the Rehabilitation Plan.
By 1 July, the airline will restore some international flights linked to the reopening of Phuket through the so-called sandbox project. Limited services will resume to Europe and cities in Asia, but it will take a year or more to restore the network to pre-pandemic levels.
Based on the Rehabilitation Plan, a number of unprofitable routes will be scratched from the timetable.
The burning question for consumers is how the Plan Administrators will deal with the unused miles travellers have accumulated under the airline’s frequent flyer program. Travellers who have unredeemed points will be asking for clarity as technically they are creditors.