PAL increases capital stock to P30 billion

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FLAG CARRIER Philippine Airlines, Inc. (PAL) on Tuesday announced that it had increased its authorized capital stock to P30 billion from P13 billion to raise funds for the company’s “transformation towards sustainable profitability.”

PAL President and Chief Operating Officer Gilbert Gabriel F. Santa Maria told reporters in a chance interview that the company “needs new capital.”

In a statement, the company said the capital hike “is part of the flag carrier’s transformation towards sustainable profitability and a higher level of competitiveness.”

It said majority of stockholders approved the increase during a special meeting held at the Century Park Hotel in Manila on Tuesday morning.

PAL Holdings, Inc., the listed operator or PAL, reported in November that in the nine months ending September, its attributable net loss widened 116.2% to P8.5 billion from the previous year’s P3.92 billion, as expenses and financing charges increased.

For the July to September period, revenues were down 0.28% to P36.7 billion, “due to the decrease in passenger and cargo revenues offset by the increase in ancillary revenue.”

PAL, along with other major local airlines, cancelled flights to and from China, Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan recently amid a coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) outbreak that has killed more than a thousand people and sickened tens of thousands more in the mainland.

Roberto Lim, executive director and vice-chairman of the Air Carriers Association of the Philippines, Inc. (ACAP), has said they expect to lose about P3 billion from ticket refunds in the next two months after the Philippine travel ban on China and its administrative regions. — Arjay L. Balinbin