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Air France-KLM abandons bid for Czech Airlines

Air France-KLM abandons bid for Czech Airlines
AP
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First Published: Wed, Aug 19 2009. 03 31 PM IST
Updated: Wed, Aug 19 2009. 03 31 PM IST
Paris: Air France-KLM on Wednesday said that it has pulled out of the bidding for Czech Airlines, citing tough times for the airline industry.
Air France-KLM said in a statement that it informed the Czech finance ministry of its decision Wednesday, and suggested that Czech Airlines focus on a recovery plan instead of a selloff.
The current economic environment has significantly impacted the airline business. Under such circumstances, Air France-KLM believes that CSA might focus on developing and implementing a stand-alone recovery plan aimed at restoring its profitability, the statement said.
Air France-KLM and the Czech consortium Unimex-Travel Service were picked by Czech government in April as candidates to take over the state-owned Czech airline. The Czech state aims to sell its 91.5% stake in the national carrier, also called CSA, in a public tender this year.
The Czech finance ministry said in a statement on Wednesday that it has been informed about Air France-KLM’s decision but plans to go ahead with the public tender as scheduled. The Unimex-Travel Service consortium has until 30 September to submit a binding offer. The government will then decide whether the offer will be accepted, the ministry said.
It was expected the government could get up to 5 billion koruna ($276 million) for CSA.
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First Published: Wed, Aug 19 2009. 03 31 PM IST