Rehab chiefs to be named this year

Rehab chiefs to be named this year

Details of plan need thrashing out

The court-ordered administrators of the rehabilitation plan for Thai Airways International (THAI) will likely be appointed in no more than three months, according to Deputy Prime Minister Wissanu Krea-ngam.

Mr Wissanu has been assigned by the cabinet to oversee the legalities surrounding the national carrier's rehab programme which is set to kick in if and when the Central Bankruptcy Court approves it.

He said on Thursday the plan's administrators must be revealed three months from now, though the announcement could come sooner.

Details of the rehab will be thrashed out mainly between the court and the creditors, although sometimes that could involve the airline.

THAI will need to come up with a rehab plan for the creditors to decide if they will accept it or not. If not, the plan will collapse, Mr Wissanu said.

He was speaking after meeting Finance Minister Uttama Savanayana and Transport Minister Saksayam Chidchob at Government House on Thursday. The meeting mulled the direction of THAI's planned rehab.

On Tuesday, the cabinet decided that debt-ridden THAI should file for bankruptcy. The Finance Ministry will sell 3.17% to the state-run Vayupak 1 Fund, with the aim of stripping the airline of its state enterprise status and facilitating the rehab.

THAI has been ordered to hire financial and legal consultants to advise on its rehabilitation under the bankruptcy law, according to Mr Saksayam.

He said on Thursday he has instructed the national carrier to produce the Terms of Reference (ToR) for the hiring and submit it for ministry approval.

The ToR must clearly define the working areas and responsibilities of the consultants within the rehab plan to be conceived.

There will also be bids to consider the technical and financial qualifications of those vying for the consultant contracts.

Mr Saksayam said the hiring must be transparent. The Transport Ministry will forward the draft ToR, once completed, to Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha for consideration.

The ToR was one of the issues Mr Saksayam ordered the airline to prepare in response to the impending bankruptcy filing and rehab entry.

The minister has given THAI until next Tuesday to submit essential documents to accompany the filing.

They include the airline's balance sheets detailing assets and debts owed to creditors in Thailand and overseas, and repayment deadlines.

THAI must also present a list of people to be nominated as rehab planners and administrators.


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