Thai Airways International won’t go bankrupt: PM


BANGKOK, Jan 26  – Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha insisted that he would not let Thai Airways International (THAI) go into bankruptcy but it must cut expenses, increase income, sell assets and restructure its organisation.

After chairing a meeting of the State Enterprise Policy Commission at Government House today, Gen Prayut said solutions were discussed regarding survival of loss-ridden state enterprises and resolved that four or five state enterprises would undergo rehabilitation steps including restructuring and legal amendments to support their operations.

Regarding losses at THAI, the national flag carrier, Gen Prayut said that the government would not let it become bankrupt.

It must change its management, structure and workforce, reduce expenses, raise income, cut non-performing routes, and partially sell assets including unnecessary aircraft through transparent auctions, he said.

Kulit Sombatsiri, director-general of the State Enterprise Policy Office, said that the State Enterprise Policy Commission approved the Statement of Direction to centralize state enterprise supervision.

It also endorsed establishing a superholding company to hold shares in state enterprises in place of the Ministry of Finance. The commission also approved a plan to resolve the problems of the State Railway of Thailand (SRT).

It assigned the Ministry of Transport to form a railway department to supervise all railway organizations.

To solve SRT debts exceeding Bt100 billion, the commission resolved that the railways transfer assets worth more than Bt80 billion to the Ministry of Finance for profitable management.

In addition the commission approved a plan to solve the problems of the Bangkok Mass Transit Authority and raised the salaries of employees at 35 state enterprises by 6.5 per cent on average to match the minimum daily wage rate of Bt300.