Eight airlines – Bangkok Airways, Nok Air, Thai AirAsia, Thai AirAsiaX, Thai Lion Air, THAI Smile Airways and Thai Vietjet- approached the government and requested it to do something for them so that they could remain afloat in the aviation business for at least one more year.
The government seemed to be worried about the airlines regarding liquidity to maintain the employment of their employees. It appeared to be satisfied with the airlines’ endeavours – that the airlines did respond to the government’s request to retain their 20,000+ workers through the COVID crisis, despite the fact that their business is limited by travel restrictions and a near-total ban on foreign tourists.
Thai AirAsia chairman Tassapon Bijleveld said that the chief expectations of the airlines from the government have been :
allocation of soft loans, an extension of the excise tax cut for jet fuel and
reduction of airline operation fees such as parking and landing charges.
Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha has pledged to offer 24 billion baht in soft loans to such airlines by October 2020 during the meeting with the airline representatives.
Such a development further endorses the basic fact that the airline industry is not yet out of its troubles. It still has to plead for tax-payers’ money to keep it in business.