Thai Airways International (THAI) board chairman Ampon Kittiampon on Tuesday revealed he would seek a clarification from the company’s management about a proposed request for a Ministry of Finance guarantee of Bt7.3-billion in loans for aircraft purchase.
He conceded the matter could confuse the public regarding the financial position of the national carrier because the request failed to be approved by the committee tasked to supervise the public debt policy.
At present, he said, THAI had a cash flow of Bt8-10 billion a month.
In consequence, Mr Ampon said, he did not understand why management had to request a loan guarantee from the finance ministry.
Mr Ampon, who is also secretary-general of the National Economic and Social Development Board (NESDB), said he understood the request was made in 2008 when THAI experienced a financial meltdown and the country was in economic crisis.
However, the national carrier’s financial position had already improved since the committee was assigned to revitalize the ailing company, so he saw no need for the finance ministry to guarantee the loans for THAI.
Mr Ampon added THAI enjoyed an impressive, higher-than-expected operating performance in 2009, but he could not elaborate because the result is being examined by the Auditor General’s Office.