AOT Offers Discounts to Airport Tenants Hit Hard by Virus Impact

20th Feb 2020

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The Airports of Thailand (AOT) is set to provide rent relief measures to operators hit hard by the slump in tourist arrivals at its airports.

AOT - which owns and operates the Suvarnabhumi, Don Muang, Phuket, Chiang Mai, Hat Yai, and Chiang Rai airports - announced on Wednesday that it would offer packaged relief measures for its tenant at its airports.

Among the proposed assistance are a 20-percent discount on fixed monthly fees for periods beginning February 1, 2020 to January 31, 2021, while considering the option to extend the same discount from February 1, 2021 to March 31, 2022.

AOT said it planned to offer a discount on percentage-based fees with monthly or annual minimum guarantees. Such fees, excluding monthly and annual minimum guarantees, are expected to be collected from February 1, 2020 to March 31, 2022.

Tenants may also avail of a six-month extension for payments of concession fees for February to July.

AOT said businesses and operators with concessions governed by the Public-Private Partnership scheme will proceed according to the law.

As a result of the relief package, AOT expects its revenues to decrease by 5 percent for the fiscal year 2019.

“The severe pneumonia outbreak caused by the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) in China has currently affected Thailand’s tourism industry due to outbound travel restrictions imposed by the Chinese government on group travel from 27 January 2020,” AOT said in a note to its investors. “The situation has also raised fears over travelers worldwide to travel to Thailand and the countries in the region,” they added.

A report by The Moodie Davitt Report released this month said that AOT’s anchor retailer King Power International was one of the businesses that suffered from the slump in tourist arrivals.

The Ministry of Tourism and Sports earlier this month said that it expected tourist arrivals to plunge by 50 percent during the first semester of the year amid the pandemic.