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Thai Airways challenging claims of over US$7 billion from leasing companies and Rolls Royce




Thai Airways is questioning claims from the lessors of some of its aircraft and Rolls-Royce, who service some of their aircraft engines. The airline is currently in the middle of lengthy bankruptcy proceedings as the court wades through thousands of creditor claims.

The lessor and maintenance claims total over $US$7 billion. Thai Airways says that it’s not liable for the payments as they relate to expenses after it went into bankruptcy proceedings and therefore is afforded protection from the Bangkok Court. According to Bangkok Post, the national airline is challenging US$6.3 billion claimed by 48 aircraft leasing companies and another 33 billion baht Rolls-Royce claims it is owed for jet engine maintenance services.

Neither the airline or any of the leasing or maintenance companies have offered comments to the story. The national carrier submitted its debt restructure plan to the Thai bankruptcy court on March 2.

The disputed amounts total more than half of Thai Airways’ total debt liability, some 410 billion baht. Unless the airline is able to reach some sort of agreement with the leasing companies or Rolls Royce, it is likely that the airline will be formally declared bankrupt, even if the court accepts the airlines’ remainder of the recovery plan. Even to get to the middle of 2021, Thai Airways will need to find 30 billion baht just to get its fleet back into the skies and to resume a revised flight schedule.

The airline also has to pay a one-time severance fee for employee that accepted early retirement and voluntary redundancies. The airline says it will also require the injection of an additional 50 billion baht over the next 24 months. It is hoping to access these funds through a new round of share offerings or borrowings – both a difficult prospect given Thai Airways’ decade-long string of losses, along with the current world economy.

Airline pundits are saying that, what they know of the recovery plan, it still fails to address much of the national airlines’ top-heavy management and old fleet. They also worry about a failure to renegotiate lease payments on much of the existing fleet and the future actions of the lessors.

Thai Airways another record loss of US$4.7 billion in 2020 after grounding its fleet due to Thailand, and the world’s, border closures in response to the Covid pandemic. Thai Airways shares were suspended from trading in February. Thai Airways shares fell 54% last year.

In the meantime much of its fleet gathers dust, and black mould, racked up in rows at Suvarnabhumi Airport, a sad state for the once proud national carrier for Thailand.

Creditors are expected to vote on the plan by May 12.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post


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  1. Avatar

    Jan Schauseil

    Saturday, March 20, 2021 at 10:48 am

    US$7 million or billion? Confusing! “after founding its fleet due to Thailand, and the world’s, border closures” founding = grounding? Does noone proofread before publishing anymore?

  2. Avatar

    Colin G

    Saturday, March 20, 2021 at 12:05 pm

    I think someone needs to check the figures quoted, which veer from millions (in the headline) to billions (in the story) and from US$ to THB.

    Also what does “after founding its fleet” mean ? Yes I can guess, but I should not have to….

  3. Avatar


    Saturday, March 20, 2021 at 12:09 pm

    Thai style bankrupt economy and cheating style. They already grounding Thai airways planes around the world because they pay not their bills. Also seen at the Airport in London

  4. Avatar


    Saturday, March 20, 2021 at 1:09 pm

    Gloom Doom and more Doom to come.

  5. Avatar

    toby andrews

    Saturday, March 20, 2021 at 1:22 pm

    It is possible to seize Thai aircraft in the UK providing there is a high court judgement allowing this.
    The problem with Thai Airways is that some of their aircraft are leased, therefore seizing a leased aircraft will not work.
    The ridiculous excuse by the Thais that they have protection of Thailand bankruptcy court and therefore need not pay their debts is another indication of Thai corruption, especially because they continue to fly.
    Whatever happens, Thailand has shown the world their real face, and it is not smiling.
    To trust Thailand now, would be very stupid indeed.

  6. Avatar


    Saturday, March 20, 2021 at 5:09 pm

    A mickey mouse operation in a cartoon country

  7. Avatar

    Mr cynic

    Saturday, March 20, 2021 at 6:43 pm

    Bit of what goes around comes around and rolls royce stitched thai up very badly with the a340.sadly the companies have only ever received joke fines in relation to the very dubious dealings round it.bit of karma at a corporate level perhaps.

  8. Avatar


    Saturday, March 20, 2021 at 8:43 pm

    Thai Airways is one of the most representative examples of Thai Corruption in doing business…Amazing Thailand…

  9. Avatar

    Adrian Williams

    Monday, March 22, 2021 at 6:04 am

    It’s time to draw a line in the life of a non functioning bankrupt no longer required company . It’s gone bust face it. It’s can’t work it way out of debt it is dead . There is s begining a middle and end end to every company in the works . THAI AIRWAYS IS GONE nothing more Job Done

  10. Avatar


    Monday, March 22, 2021 at 10:37 am

    Amazing are the egos of people in this country that prevents them from having a native speaker proofread their work. Happens at schools, including universities. Some of the most pitiful English is in school EP promotional materials. It’s SMH stuff.

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