Thai Airways International has saved 10.3 billion Thai baht ($310 million) on non-fuel expenses in the first three quarters of this year, as the airline works to reduce its debt.

It expects to achieve 11.84 billion Thai baht in savings, or a 15% reduction in costs, in the whole of 2009, says the carrier.

"Cost reductions resulted from cutting unnecessary expenses as well as revising work processes to increase productivity and efficiency," adds the airline.

The cuts were in areas like personnel-related expenses, flight crew and cabin crew costs, marketing, sales, advertising, leases on aircraft, engines and spare parts.

For example, overtime was reduced by 48% from a year ago, and flight operational expenses were cut by 67%.

The Star Alliance carrier, which has a 160 billion Thai baht debt, says it will continue to implement the cost cutting measures.

Thai appointed a new president in June and embarked on a four-year plan to turn the airline around.

Source: Air Transport Intelligence news