PIA to expand fleet by end of 2015

By APP
Published: December 1, 2015
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PHOTO: AFP

PHOTO: AFP

ISLAMABAD: Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Aviation Shujaat Azeem said the fleet strength of Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) was being raised to expand its flight operation.

“15 aircraft have already been added to the existing fleet of 37 and with five more by the end of this year – the total strength would be 42,” said Azeem.

“Revival of the airline was Prime Minister (PM) Nawaz Sharif’s vision, entrusted to me,” he said.

“Given PM’s directive, an aviation policy is being formulated, after a lapse of 15 years, which will exempt the investment in the sector from being taxed. Only revenue will be taxed.

PIA welcomes additional aircraft, fleet increases to 37

“A professional board has been constituted for the first time and competent people hired,” he said, noting “over 300 employees holding fake degrees have been terminated.

“The average age of an operational aircraft has been reduced to nine years from 14 and will be further decreased to six.”

“Wi-Fi would be available on board and quality services will be ensured at the airport.

“Airports will have fog lights installations, working in a 50-meter radius even in zero visibility, to ensure smooth flight operations in extreme weather conditions.”

With regards to the rift with Pakistan Airlines Pilots Association (Palpa), Azeem said it should be working towards PIA’s progress rather than halting flight operations.

Middle Eastern carriers ruining PIA: Babar

“Government is willing to address their concerns as long as they perform their duties responsibly,” he said. “Salaries of Grade I to IV had been increased by around 55% despite the airline’s financial problems.” 

Published in The Express Tribune, December 1st,  2015.

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Reader Comments (10)

  • Usman Sherazi (TORONTO)
    Dec 1, 2015 - 5:05AM

    Well, Mr Shujaat Azeem, forget about the onboard WIFI for now and at least get the video monitors fixed on your long haul 777s for God’s sake before uttering another word about the so-called “revival”. Or the next time be ready to get caged into that 13-hour Toronto flight with no on-board entertainment whatsoever.

    Even a third-grader knows these days the foremost priority of any business is to keep it’s revenue-generating customer happy.

    After 30 years of being a loyal PIA customer for travel to and from Pakistan, I am just about ready to put my “loyalty” aside if I don’t see some real, basic change in the very near future.
    Thank you!!
    ET: Please publish my comment. PIA management needs to hear this.Recommend

  • SWAB
    Dec 1, 2015 - 9:23AM

    Just happened to talk to a serving PIA Captain yesterday for a couple of mins… according to him PIA is getting worse by the minute…privatization is the only chance to revive it… that to if things get going before its too late! Recommend

  • Dec 1, 2015 - 1:09PM

    If a one way flight from Islamabad to Heathrow on PIA costs Rs75000 and that from Peshawar to Heathrow on Emirates costs Rs54000 somebody needs to really convince me to pay more for crap serviceRecommend

  • Fuzail
    Dec 1, 2015 - 4:25PM

    @Naveed: “from Peshawar to Heathrow on Emirates costs Rs54000”. You are mistaken sir. The flight is not, cannot, be direct. We should compare apples with apples.
    I don’t mind paying more to PIA to avoid waiting on other airports as transit passenger, but PIA has got to improve. PIA crew itself (pilots, cabin crews, booking agents, etc.) must be convinced first that PIA is improving because these people often badmouth the airline, and often without a valid reason.Recommend

  • cautious
    Dec 1, 2015 - 4:30PM

    PIA has terrible reputation, overstaffed, overpaid, and has accumulated enormous financial losses. In private industry PIA would have been shuttered or sold …. but govt owned it decides to expand and give pay raises. Go figure.Recommend

  • Acorn Gtus
    Dec 1, 2015 - 5:33PM

    Last year I took 24hr transit at Dubai (on Emirates) just to avoid the dreadful service by PIA. Forget wi-fi, just fix the basics like toilets, seats and over head bins first!Recommend

  • Flag Carrier
    Dec 1, 2015 - 10:43PM

    PIA needs to get the basics right… Offer clean, workable planes, a smile, and stick to On-time schedules… With 15 near new A320s and the likes added to the fleet, PIA can also add relatively younger inflight crew who are half educated…

    In the 1960s when Pierre Cardin was a very hot designer around the world, PIA uniforms were designed by him….

    It will help to put younger smiling crew, in younger planes and get their uniforms updated to freshen up…

    Leave the Unions on the ground!!!Recommend

  • Dec 1, 2015 - 10:50PM

    there is no need to privatize PIA….just increase the number of aircrafts in the fleet…
    kick out all the useless staff….cut extra expenditures….increase flights…upgrade airports….recruit better staff…provide better services during the flight time and at the airports….can even change the appearance of the PIA but not the name.Recommend

  • Shehryar
    Dec 2, 2015 - 8:12AM

    @Naveed Next time take the time to actually look up the fares. I

    ISB to LHR on PIA costs 89k direct. (Return)

    PEW to DXB to LHR costs 100k with a stopover. (Return)

    Now someone has to convince me to pay 11k more to fly with a flight that has a 5-6 hour or more stop and a change in aeroplane.Recommend

  • Muzaffar.
    Dec 2, 2015 - 8:16AM

    PIA………Please, to compete and keep passengers happy, like EMIRATES, QATAR, and
    ETIHAD airlines, who are ALSO Muslims. If you could only add an open bar and drinks,
    Only on International flights, then see the difference. People will forget about wi-fi, seats etc:
    Please not that there are thousands of non-Muslim potential customers too. Cheers !Recommend

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