Thai Airways profits nearly tripled in last year’s final quarter

Thai Airways International (THAI) had a strong financial performance in the final quarter of 2022, reflecting the gradual recovery of Thailand’s tourism industry.

According to the national flag carrier’s annual financial statement filed with the Thai Stock Exchange on February 24, the net income for the fourth quarter of 2022 surged to 11.15 billion baht, almost triple the 4 billion baht registered a year earlier.

The statement showed that operating income for the same period grew more than fivefold to 8.9 billion baht from a 2.6 billion baht deficit in the previous year, resulting in a 367% increase in the airline’s total revenue to 36.9 billion baht. Meanwhile, THAI reported an 84.3% decrease in operating loss, excluding one-time items, to 4.59 billion baht in 2022, down from a 29.19 billion baht loss in 2021, Pattaya Mail reported.

Since early this year, the airline has resumed flights to China’s major cities to meet the rising demand and is planning to add new routes, expand its fleet and increase the number of flights to achieve its rehabilitation plan.

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THAI’s new chief executive officer has outlined the airline’s plans to exit its rehabilitation earlier than scheduled, in late 2024, and resume trading on the Thai Stock Exchange in two years. The airline filed for bankruptcy protection in 2020, as the Covid-19 pandemic dealt a severe blow to the global aviation industry.

The airline’s financial results suggest that THAI is on track to recover from the pandemic’s impact, and its rehabilitation plan could help it return to profitability soon. The airline’s performance is also a positive sign for Thailand’s tourism industry, which has been hit hard by the pandemic and is slowly recovering.

Last week, it was reported that THAI expects to carry about 19 million passengers this year, up from nine million in 2022. The carrier also said it plans to increase flight frequencies and add new routes, as well as expand its fleet by nine jets in 2023, according to a statement.

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Tara Abhasakun

A Thai-American dual citizen, Tara has reported news and spoken on a number of human rights and cultural news issues in Thailand. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in history from The College of Wooster. She interned at Southeast Asia Globe, and has written for a number of outlets. Tara reports on a range of Thailand news issues.

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