Ex-CAA head questioned over TransAsia share trading

12/01/2016 01:37 PM
Former Civil Aeronautics Administration Director-General Billy Chang
Former Civil Aeronautics Administration Director-General Billy Chang

Taipei, Dec. 1 (CNA) Prosecutors on Thursday questioned former Civil Aeronautics Administration (CAA) Director-General Billy Chang (張國政) as part of an investigation into allegations that his announcements of a plan to take over TransAsia Airways, followed by his withdrawal of the takeover offer, were intended to affect trading in the airline's shares.

TransAsia abruptly announced its closure on Nov. 22 due to financial woes, and its stock price had fallen 34 percent since then as of Nov. 28.

However, TransAsia shares rose by the maximum daily limit of 10 percent to NT$3.76 a day later when Chang said a business group he represents was willing to take over the financially troubled carrier, provided that all of its air routes remained intact.

The day after that, Chang said he had decided to abandon the takeover plan because the airline's domestic and international flying rights are to be revoked.

Chang's remarks on the takeover plan led to sharp fluctuations in the carrier's share price, Shih Jun-ji (施俊吉), chairman of the Taiwan Stock Exchange Corp. (TWSE), said Wednesday, adding that the TWSE has sent data it had monitored over the past two days to prosecutors.

TransAsia Chairman Vincent Lin (林明昇) was also summoned by the Taipei District Prosecutors Office for questioning as a potential defendant.

(By Yiu Kai-hsiang and Evelyn Kao)ENDITEM/J

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