An ATR-72 plane owned by the Vietnam Aircraft Leasing Co. is about to be auctioned for the 9th time, with the starting sale price reduced by over one-fifth of the original one.
The plane, manufactured in 2010, had been leased to VASCO, a carrier under Vietnam Airlines, which stopped operating this twin-turboprop aircraft in June 2022.
In September 2022, the plane was put up for auction for the first time with a starting price of nearly VND175 billion ($7.4 million). The first and seven subsequent auctions found no buyers.
At the 9th auction slated for April 10 in Ho Chi Minh City, the starting price will be VND137 billion.
In Vietnam, ATR-72 aircraft, capable of carrying some 70 people, have been used by Vietnam Airlines and VASCO mainly for flights to small airports such as Con Dao in the southern province of Ba Ria Vung Tau and Dien Bien in the northern province of Dien Bien.
However, Vietnam Airlines plans to replace its ATR-72 fleet with regional jets to optimize service and be more competitive.
In 2016, the Vietnam Aircraft Leasing Co. for the first time announced the auction of five ATR-72 aircraft and two firms from the United States and Singapore won the auction with a final bid of VND1.15 trillion.
However, the two firms continuously delayed the time of receiving the aircraft due to the failure to find buyers or leasers, causing the Vietnamese company to cancel the auction results.
Two years later, a firm from Hong Kong bought two out of the five ATR-72 aircraft for VND190 billion each.
According to the most recent annual report, Vietnam Airlines recognized the Vietnam Aircraft Leasing Co. as an associated company with an ownership rate of nearly 32.5%.
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