Sunday, July 3, 2022

Cruise operator Genting HK files to wind up company

Most operations of Genting Hong Kong will likely cease, although some will continue in an effort to preserve core assets.

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Cruise operator Genting Hong Kong said Wednesday it has filed to be wound up, about a week after its German shipbuilding subsidiaries went bankrupt, after the coronavirus pandemic hammered the industry.

Covid-related travel curbs have battered the global cruise sector hard, but particularly in Asia where many countries’ borders remain closed to tourism.

Genting Hong Kong – part of the Genting Group, founded in Malaysia and with interests ranging from casinos to property – said it had “exhausted all reasonable efforts” to negotiate with creditors and stakeholders.

In a statement to the Hong Kong stock exchange, the company said it had lodged a court filing to appoint provisional liquidators.

Most operations of Genting Hong Kong will likely cease, although some will continue in an effort to preserve core assets, it said.

Trading in Genting HK’s shares, which have slumped this month, was halted Tuesday and will remain suspended.

The news came after Genting’s German shipbuilding subsidiaries, MV Werften and Lloyd Werft, filed for bankruptcy earlier this month.

The larger subsidiary MV Werften took the step after failing to secure funding for the completion of the “Global One” mega-liner, which is already 80 percent of the way through construction, according to the company.

Genting HK later accused the German state of Mecklenburg-West Pomerania of failing to pay out money promised as part of a rescue plan for MV Werften.

Like some of its rivals during the pandemic, Genting HK launched “cruises to nowhere” – starting and ending at the same place – in an effort to keep its ailing business afloat.

But many tourists remain wary about resuming such trips, with concerns heightened by a series of Covid-19 outbreaks on liners.

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