Thai Airways expects to repay massive debts by 2031, CEO says


Improving business and steady cash flow at Thai Airways International should help it meet its debt-repayment obligations by 2031, Chai Eamsiri, the carrier’s CEO said.

The airline has been in the process of business rehabilitation since May 27, 2020.

Significant progress has been achieved in organisational restructuring, the merger between Thai Airways and Thai Smile Airways, and the acceleration of debt repayment to 36 groups of creditors, Chai said.

Its total debt, including principal and interest, surpasses 410 billion baht.

Thai Airways will repay about 10 billion baht in debt to its creditors with partial stock loans next year.

"Eight years from now, Thai Airways will have cleared all debts from every group [of creditors]. If we have sufficient cash on hand along the way, we will pay off various debts even faster … At present, apart from thorough business planning, we must accumulate cash on hand to be ready for debt payment. We currently have 50 billion baht on hand, [some of] which we are preparing to use for debt payment next year," Chai said.

Thai Airways also aims to fully refund 1.2 billion in debt on passenger tickets by March of next year, but efforts are being made to ensure payment completion by October.

If the airline cannot contact the ticket holders it has to refund, it will deposit this debt with the central bankruptcy court to confirm readiness for payment.