Japanese Banker Association Chairman: We need to be onboard


Japanese Bankers Association Chairman Katsunori Nagayasu commented on the restructuring of Japan Airlines (JAL) yesterday during his last conference as chairman. He basically told the reporters that the banks have to be onboard with JAL's restructuring plan or there will be no more financial assistance given to JAL.

According to Nikkei's report titled "JAL Rehab Plan Must Be Verified For More Aid: Bank Assn Chief", the major Japanese banks, which are also JAL's major lenders, cannot extend financial support unless they agree that JAL's plan is going to work.

"The issue here is not whether it is possible to revive JAL," Nagayasu said. "It must draw up a plan that makes a revival possible."

According to earlier report by Yomiuri, the bankers did not agree with JAL's revival plan and demanded for further cuts and therefore JAL came up with the rumored extended suspension list. Development Bank of Japan (DBJ) evaluated the plan positively according to the same report but it did not mention about the three other mega Japanese banks. So I am still not sure if they have agreed to JAL's latest plan or not.

Hopefully this will get resolved soon. If not, just blame Maehara and Kan. Kan san is allegedly the one who advocated for the bankruptcy filing. The mega banks initially didn't agree with the approach but had no choice at the end...You know the House of Councillors' election is coming on July 11 2010, with DPJ's falling rating and the mess around JAL, I wouldn't be surprised if DPJ lost its majority if things don't get better before July!

But the good news is there is still time for JAL and the bankers to work on the plan. The court filing deadline is end of June. There are still 2.5 months left so I will remain positive for now, and that's the only thing I can do. So keep flying JAL and be positive. :)

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