TOKUDA CONFIRMS ITS INTEREST IN BALKAN AIRLINES
Tokushukai-Sofia EOOD, representing the interests of the Japanese businesman Torao Tokuda, confirmed during the week that it would not withdraw from the rehabilitation of Balkan Airlines. The institution, owned by Dr. Tokuda's Tokushukai Medical Corpration, is not only the single candidate that has publicly announced its interest towards the Bulgarian air carrier, but has also confirmed it, ignoring the stance of its consultant and probable executive director of Tokuda Credit Express Bank Stoyan Alexandrov. The bank is held by International Hospital Services, which is also owned by Tokushukai Medical Corpration. In a statement on August 16, broadcasted by the Bulgarian National Radio, the former finance minister Alexandrov said investing in Balkan would be unprofitable, pointing out the airline's huge indebtedness and the necessity of capital investments in aircraft. Nevertheless, four days later the official position of Tokushukai-Sofia EOOD was announced, from which its became known that Dr. Torao Tokuda had not changed his intentions regarding Balkan Airlines. Therefore, negotiations with the financial institution were renewed, Balkan's trustee in bankruptcy Vladimir Petkov told the BANKER weekly.
The Japanese, however, could face serious problems after finalizing the preliminary audit of the Bulgarian air-carrier. Experts of Tokushukai-Sofia have already begun it.
The audit will not be finalized soon, as it has been delayed by the trustees in bankruptcy, who give contradictory data about the company's state of affairs, Stoyan Alexaandrov commented to the BANKER weekly. He has in mind the airline's liabilities, acknowledged by the trustees in bankruptcy, which have increased from BGL209MN to BGL214.3MN within two months.
Tokushukai-Sofia's experts possess all the information about the airline's property, its annual balance sheets, and human resources. The question is when and in what form they will summerize it, the trustee in bankruptcy Petkov replied to the criticism. He explained for the BANKER weekly that the confirmed interest of the financial institution towards Balkan bespeaks of its intntion to take part in the airline's rehabilitation programme, which is being presently prepared and is expected to be moved to the Council of Creditors by end-October.