6.2 billion baht earmarked by Exim Bank for bailout for airlines

FILE PHOTO: Airlines are receiving 6.2 billion baht of bailouts.

Local airlines are getting a cash injection as the Export-Import Bank of Thailand has given over 6.2 billion baht to keep them afloat and planes in the sky. The financial assistance is aimed to increase liquidity and restructure airline debt to stay solvent through the long-lasting Covid-19 pandemic, according to the Exim Bank president.

The bank is starting out by suspending 3.5 billion baht of loan repayments and rescheduling debt payments while also providing 2.7 billion baht in new loans to struggling local airlines to prevent them from having to do any layoffs and provide liquidity while the tourism sector that got a taste of reopening for the last 2 months now looks to be closing back to a trickle again.

The president of Exim Bank says he’s been following the pandemic and how it unfolds this year to see how the travel and airline industry is likely to be affected by the pandemic. The sharp uptick in Covid-19 infections today does not bode well, and the government’s decision not to reinstate the Test & Go programme for the time being is a big nail in the coffin of the tourism sector.

Exim Bank will use the information they gather about travel trends this month to predict the near future of travel and determine how much financial assistance is reasonable to offer to the local airlines. The president of the bank vowed to support businesses flattened by the Covid-19 pandemic to keep the economy and key sectors from collapsing.

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Large businesses and sectors like airlines and tourism must be propped up so there’s something still standing to drive the economic recovery that will take place as the pandemic comes to a close. The bank plans to further help the little guy by choosing which airlines to offer support to based on their plans to avoid layoffs.

The bank is rumoured to have earmarked a maximum of 20 billion baht reserved for offering financial relief to the ailing airline sector.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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Neill Fronde

Neill is a journalist from the United States with 10+ years broadcasting experience and national news and magazine publications. He graduated with a degree in journalism and communications from the University of California and has been living in Thailand since 2014.

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