Airline group seeks soft loan clarity from Prayut

Airline group seeks soft loan clarity from Prayut

The Airlines Association of Thailand (AAT) submitted a letter to Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha on Wednesday, asking the government to allocate soft loans for airlines and vaccinations for workers in the aviation industry.

After a meeting of AAT members, which comprise Bangkok Airways, Thai AirAsia, Thai AirAsia X, Thai Smile Airways, Nok Air, Thai Lion Air and Thai Vietjet, the association agreed to call for clarity on proposals made at a meeting with Gen Prayut on Aug 28, 2020.

As the industry faces a third wave of the pandemic, several flights had to be shelved to contain the virus spread. This delay caused more financial strain in terms of operational costs and payroll.

Soft loans would help mitigate the economic impact from the outbreak, said the AAT.

Last year airlines initially requested 24 billion baht in soft loans, then reduced the amount to 14 billion with a focus on payroll to save jobs.

The association is encouraging the government to speed up the vaccination programme for airline staff, who are frontline tourism workers.

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