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Korean Air, Qatar Interested In Czech Airlines

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Korean Air and Qatar Airways have expressed interest in the sell-off of CSA Czech Airlines, two sources familiar with the sale process said on Wednesday.

The Czech Finance Ministry is in the early stages of preparing the sale of the state carrier and has contacted 52 airline companies. Minister Miroslav Kalousek briefed the cabinet on Wednesday.

The government had tried to sell the airline in 2009, following heavy losses from a failed expansion plan.

Czech Airlines, a member of the Sky Team alliance, has had to cut back its fleet and services to avoid collapse.

The airline lost CZK241 million koruna (USD$12.10 million) last year.

The company is owned by state holding group Cesky Aeroholding, which also operates Prague Airport.

In September, the EU Commission gave approval for EUR€100 million (USD$131 million) in state aid granted to Czech Airlines.

The Commission said the company's restructuring plan was sufficient to address its financial problems.

(Reuters)

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