HONG KONG – Collapsed Hong Kong budget airline Oasis had its air transport licences revoked by the authority, a move that brought the business a step closer to its end.
The Air Transport Licensing Authority informed Oasis Hong Kong Airlines that the 13 permits had lapsed because the carrier had gone into liquidation, said a statement released by Hong Kong’s government late Friday.
‘This means that even if, somehow, their business is revived in the future, they would still need to apply for new air transport licences to run flight services,’ a government spokeswoman told Agence France-Presse.
The authority said in another statement released on Friday that Oasis’ licences lapsed on April 9, the day when it presented its petition for winding up to court and when it ceased air services.
‘The licences were personal to Oasis, not capable of being transferred,’ the statement said. The authority pointed out that the powers to carry on or cease operation of the company had gone into the hands of another party – Edward Middleton and Patrick Cowley of financial services group KPMG – who were appointed by the court as Oasis’ provisional liquidators on April 9.
The liquidators said that they were concerned about the authority’s decision and were studying its impact on Oasis’ future.
The authority’s decision came after solicitors acting for KPMG tried to stop it from revoking Oasis’ licences in April. They argued that the company had not yet entered into receivership or liquidation and that the issue would be a matter to be determined at the liquidation hearing in high court, set for June 11.
The revoked permits allowed the airline to run flights on routes between Hong Kong and London, Berlin, Chicago, Sydney, San Francisco, Singapore, Bangkok, and a few other international cities.
The budget airline ceased its operation just 18 months after it first took to the skies.