Tue, Sep 02, 2014 - Page 13 News List

Chooi steps down as TransAsia president

EARLY RESIGNATION:The president stepped down in what the airline insisted was an arrangement Chooi and the carrier made before the Penghu plane crash

By Amy Su  /  Staff reporter

Taiwan’s first budget carrier, Tigerair Taiwan, yesterday announced it will be offering a promotional flight for NT$888 from noon today for its Sept. 26 inaugural Taipei-Singapore route.

Photo: Lin Chia-chi, Taipei Times

TransAsia Airways Corp (TNA, 復興航空) announced yesterday its president Chooi Yee-choong (徐以聰) had left the firm with an early resignation submitted before the July 23 crash of Flight GE222 on Penghu.

Chooi’s resignation was approved by the carrier’s board of directors on Friday last week, with vice president Fred Wu (吳滬生) appointed as the acting president, the company said in a filing to the Taiwan Stock Exchange.

“He [Chooi] has helped the company fulfill the short-term objective of route expansion and tendered his resignation in early July,” company spokeswoman Christine Tu (涂佩君) said by telephone.

Chooi, who joined the carrier’s management team as chief commercial operator in November 2012, was promoted to company president in March.

His shorter-than-expected term as president raised speculations that there was a connection with the plane crash, but the company denied that.

The incident has also raised concerns over the delayed launch of V Air (威航), TNA’s planned low-cost carrier, which was set to begin operations later this month.

Representatives for V Air said the carrier might be launched in the fourth quarter, and the holdup was mainly due to the lengthy process of filing its application and receiving official permission.

However, the other budget carrier in preparation in Taiwan, Tigerair Taiwan (台灣虎航), yesterday announced the Sept. 26 launch of its first route between Taipei and Singapore.

Tigerair Taiwan, a joint venture between Taiwan’s largest carrier, China Airlines Ltd (CAL, 中華航空), and Tiger Airways Pte of Singapore, has taken delivery of its aircraft, an Airbus SAS 320, and expects to receive the second and the third aircraft by the end of this year.

“Other than the first route to Singapore, the carrier might launch two or three new routes to destinations in Southeast Asia by the end of this year,” chief executive officer Yue Kwan (關栩) told a press conference.

After the company receives a further four A320 series aircraft next year, Tigerair Taiwan is set to launch new routes to destinations in Japan and South Korea, aiming to break even during the second year of operations, Kwan added.

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