The Czech Republic’s flag carrier has filed for bankruptcy

The Czech Republic’s flag carrier, CSA (which stands for České Aerolinie), has filed for bankruptcy under the country’s Insolvency Act (Act N° 182 or 2006), which as of 2013, offers a debt discharge program. This Insolvency Act is used for 3 types of insolvency proceedings: those of bankruptcy, reorganisation and debt relief. Prior to filing for bankruptcy, the airline sent a dismissal letter to all 430 of its employees. The airline has never recieved financial support from the Czech Reublic’s government during this crisis, and a final moratorium (a delay created to permit a company to perform a legal obligation or to pay back its debts) granted by a court in the country’s capital, Prague, in May 2020, expired on February the 27th. Although the airline’s shareholders have continued to express their interest in supporting the airline, the Czech government has announced that it will not be able to do so. A possible merger with the airline’s private parent company, Smartwings Travel Group (a low-cost leisure airline based in Prague, which also has subsidiaries in Slovakia, Hungary and Poland and that mainly flies to Southern European and North African destinations) is being discussed. In May last year, attempts to nationalise Smartwings Travel Group were unsuccessful. Smartwings Travel Group is mainly owned by several Czech businessmen as well as by CITIC Investment Corporation, a Chinese state-owned investment company that holds a 49.9% stake in the airline group, the maximum percentage that a non-EU company can own in an EU-based company. CSA now operates 7 aircraft, of which 5 ATR 72s, 1 Airbus A319 and 1 Airbus A320. having returned 7 aircraft to their lessors last year. CSA is the 5th oldest carrier in the world after KLM, Avianca, Qantas and Aeroflot: will it survive to celebrate its 100th anniversary? 3rd of March 2021.

A Czecho-Slovakian Ilyushin Il-12 in 1957 at Paris Orly Airport. Note that this was at a time when the Czech Rupeblic and Slovakia were united. As of 1993, the two countries are independant republics.

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