Kingfisher suspended by IATA for non-payment of dues

Kingfisher Airlines
New Delhi, Mar 7: Beleaguered Kingfisher Airlines was on Wednesday suspended for non-payment of dues for the second time in just over a month by the IATA from participating in a system which enables the airlines to settle their interline billings globally.

"IATA has suspended Kingfisher Airlines' participation in the IATA Clearing House (ICH). This is because the airline did not settle their ICH account within the stipulated deadline," IATA's Assistant Director (Corporate Communications) Albert Tjoeng said in a statement from Singapore.

He said, "Kingfisher's participation in the ICH will be reinstated after the airline fulfills the ICH requirements." This is the second time since February two that the cash -strapped carrier has been suspended from ICH for not paying its dues.

Earlier, its status was restored ten days later. It has now been suspended once again, IATA sources said. Airlines and airline-associated companies join the IATA Clearing House to settle accounts for services provided by them to other airlines or firms.

The bank accounts of the airline, which is struggling to stay afloat, have been frozen by the income tax, service tax and excise and customs departments for failing to pay dues. Crisis-ridden Kingfisher Airlines had last month also delayed joining the global airlines' grouping 'oneworld' due to its precarious financial position.

It was slated to formally join the airline alliance on February 10. The airline, which never made a profit since its inception in May 2005, reported a net loss of Rs 444.26 crore in the December quarter. It suffered a loss of Rs 1,027 crore in 2010-11 and has a debt of Rs 7,057.08 crore apart from over Rs 4,000 crore of accumulated losses and a restructured long- term loan of around Rs 7,000 crore. 


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