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UK restates intent to review airline insolvency laws post-Monarch

The UK government has reiterated its intention to review the regulations governing airline insolvencies in the wake of the collapse of Monarch Airlines.

In its autumn budget, the Treasury says it plans to appoint an "independent chair" to review "consumer protection in the event of an airline or travel company failure".

This review, it adds, will "draw on lessons from the collapse of Monarch, and will consider both repatriation and refund protection to identify the market reforms necessary to ensure passengers are protected".

There will be "full consideration of options to allow airlines to wind down in an orderly fashion so that they are able to conduct and finance repatriation operations without impact on the taxpayer".

The cost of repatriating Monarch passengers stranded by the airline's collapse last month is estimated to be in the region of £60 million ($80 million).

Speaking before a parliamentary select committee last month, transport secretary Chris Grayling said that under the UK's insolvency laws, it had proven to be "cheaper" for the government to "hire an alternative fleet of planes than to risk taking on what was potentially a much larger liability" by operating Monarch's fleet of aircraft to repatriate customers back to the UK.

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