National carrier: PIA racks up Rs87m in losses daily, Senate told

Published: February 8, 2014
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Senate was informed that a staggering Rs0.5 million a month was being paid to 214 employees - with over a dozen of them bagging more than one million each in salary and benefits. PHOTO: FILE

Senate was informed that a staggering Rs0.5 million a month was being paid to 214 employees - with over a dozen of them bagging more than one million each in salary and benefits. PHOTO: FILE

ISLAMABAD: 

The upper house of parliament was informed on Friday that the financially stricken national flag carrier, Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) was incurring losses worth Rs87 million on a daily basis.

The Senate was informed that a staggering Rs0.5 million a month was being paid to 214 employees – with over a dozen of them bagging more than one million each in salary and benefits.

While responding to a question, Sheikh Aftab, Minister of State for Parliamentary affairs said that the airline suffered Rs33 billion losses during 2012 – while losses amounting to Rs31 billion were reported during the first nine months of financial year 2013.

Defending the government’s report card, Aftab claimed that the PML-N inherited the carrier when it was bleeding cash – with losses worth Rs110 million a day which were reduced to Rs87 million a day.  The minister explained that the government has injected Rs16 billion out of which Rs11.75 billion has been released so far as equity in PIA.

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MFN status

Minister for Commerce Khurram Dastgir Khan informed the House that Pakistan has not yet given Non-Discriminatory Market Access (NDMA) and Most Favoured Nation (MFN) status to India.

Dastgir said both countries have made commitments and negotiations are under way on the issue. He‚ however‚ said that market access has been agreed between the two countries on reciprocal basis.

To another question‚ the minister said during the meeting of commerce ministers in New Delhi last month both sides also agreed to enhance operational hours at Wahga-Attari land route.

Peace talks

Former interior minister Rehman Mailk said Anti-Terrorism Act (ATA), Malik said the on-going peace talks with the Taliban were in violation of the Constitution unless the group is removed from the list of proscribed organisations.

The PPP lawmaker said that the Taliban have used the negotiations merely as a ruse to buy time to regroup in the past and peace agreements with militant groups signed in 2004, 2005 and 2008 could not hold.

Published in The Express Tribune, February 8th, 2014.

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Reader Comments (6)

  • Pakistani
    Feb 8, 2014 - 12:17PM

    Why PIA and other public enterprises are not put under competent and clean administration by the PMLN government. This was their manifesto before the elections. Now the stage is set for ‘Loot sale’ of the public institutions in the name of privatization. This is not going to happen. Army and the judiciary won’t let this happen to the country. Free media is also there.

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  • Pakistani
    Feb 8, 2014 - 12:35PM

    Politicians use these state owned organizations by ‘giving’ jobs to their supporters and then cry over it’s poor performance once they are no longer in power.

    Another example is the Steel Mill, which was a profit making entity from 2000 to 2007 and achieved 82% capacity utilization in 2008. Then it took a reverse as Zardari government came in and has been making loss since then. In terms of profit in 2007-08, PSM made Rs2.38 billion.

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  • Maaz
    Feb 8, 2014 - 12:45PM

    “The Senate was informed that a staggering Rs0.5 million a month was being paid to 214 employees – with over a dozen of them bagging more than one million each in salary and benefits.”

    Dear Editor, I think simple maths here makes this sentence sound silly. It should be reviewed and any such typing mistakes should be removed as it gives a bad impression on reporting of credible news.

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  • Muslim Leaguer
    Feb 8, 2014 - 12:50PM

    The Taxpayers cannot afford this hole in the drain anymore. PIA is already burdened with huge debt of more than Rs 150 Billion, mostly eaten away by PPP-appointed jiyalas through kickbacks.
    PIA must be privatized soonest to prevent this loss to the Taxpayers. Else, this further loss of Rs 87 million per day should be recovered from the pseudo-intellectuals opposing the privatization.

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  • unbelievable
    Feb 8, 2014 - 7:00PM

    You will save more money shutting down this chronic loser than you will ever make trying to sell it. Who wants to buy a company who has a lousy reputation, antiquated assets that are fully leveraged, and overstaffed/overpaid workers who have lousy attitude? Top it off with a seller who wants to retain majority control so he can force you to hire political cronies and you have the makings of an unsaleable company.

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  • Joe Pashi
    Feb 8, 2014 - 8:22PM

    I think news such as this is cooked-up by a conflict of interest by those who are interested in privatization. My confusion is: how can a business entity lose so much money when its not making any? If the government is funding this lose, where is it getting this money? The govt. has already gone beyond its means with loans.
    This whole thing doesn’t add up.
    While I attest to the benefit of increased media vigilance, there come in crooks under sheep skin with figures that other sincere sources don’t look at it with a suspicious eye

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