Thai Airways hopes to return to operational profit in two years
Struggling national flag carrier Thai Airways International expects to make a profit in 2024 if the government’s policy of reopening Thailand to foreign arrivals proceeds smoothly, said Piyasvasti Amranand, chairman of the Rehabilitation Plan Administrators, on Monday.
He said that the company, which is undergoing bankruptcy-protected restructuring, has managed to cut operational costs by more than 44.8 billion baht, which includes changes of aircraft rental and maintenance contracts, sale of the company’s land and buildings, reduction of fringe benefits for its employees and a 50% reduction in the work force.
He also said, however, that the airline is in need of a fresh injection of cash and is about to begin negotiations with financial institutions for 25 billion baht in loans, to compensate redundant employees and to refund customers who bought air tickets in advance, after it has been found that a promise by the government to inject another 50 billion baht may not be forthcoming due to fiscal limitations and other political reasons.
Piyasvasti said the airline will press ahead with its plans to sell its stake in its Bangkok Aviation Fuel Services (BAFS) subsidiary and to auction its bakery franchise Puff and Pie, to increase the number of outlets 500 in five years using the same model as PTT’s non-core Café Amazon, which is doing well.