Flood crisis causes Bt3 bln national carrier loss in Q4


BANGKOK, Dec 6 – Thai Airways International (THAI) will lose about Bt3 billion in revenues in Q4 due to the flood crisis, THAI President Piyasvasti Amranand said Tuesday.

Surveying the airline’s damage at flood-hit Don Mueang Airport, he said the number of tourists from South Korea, Japan and China dropped 40 to 50 per cent owing to travel advisories to Thailand from their countries, resulting in a drop in cabin load factors in November to 61 per cent from 72 per cent year-on-year.

Floodwaters surrounding the capital’s second airport have receded and the area has become dry again.

Two Thai Airways International (THAI) Airbus A300-600 aircraft were previously parked outside a hangar and water covered their wheels. Workers had covered the wheelbases with plastic, said THAI’s Heavy Maintenance Department director Wuttichai Saguanmoo.

According to Mr Piyasvasti, the more than a month-long flood crisis has damaged the airline’s aircraft repair buildings, equipment, and administration buildings. Insurance was carried with two companies, with initial insurance coverage at Bt300 million per building.

Regarding the two Airbus A300-600 aircraft, he said post-flood damage is being assessed for both aircraft, while they await resale in an open bidding process. Nine buyers are interested so far and have checked the planes’ conditions. Market prices for each carrier, if used for 20 years, were marked at US$5 million.

Mr Piyavasti said that the THAI maintenance department at Don Mueang would need at least two months for renovation during the post-flood period, resulting in postponement of the company’s aircraft improvement project for passenger seats and entertainment equipment.