Tuesday April 23, 2024

Resumption of PIA flights in UK after two-year ban likely soon

Process towards resumption of Pakistan International Airlines flights in United Kingdom makes progress, say sources

By Tariq Abul Hasan
October 24, 2022
An aeroplane of the national flag carrier of Pakistan is seen in this file photo. — AFP
An aeroplane of the national flag carrier of Pakistan is seen in this file photo. — AFP

Progress has taken place in the process towards the resumption of  Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) flights in the United Kingdom, as the national flag carrier will be starting operations from the country after a two-year ban, sources said Monday.

Sources privy to the matter said that a five-member delegation of the Civil Aviation Authority  left for Brussels for a meeting with the officials of the European Commission and International Aviation Safety Assessment (IASA) on October 25. The delegation will brief the authorities on licensing, access and registration, they said.

As per the sources, the CAA was summoned by the European authorities to hold a technical meeting.

The European Commission and IASA will visit Pakistan in 2023 to review the measures being taken by the airline. The operations will  resume if the commission and IASA are satisfied.

The visit to Pakistan is a condition set for the PIA to resume their flights in European countries.

PIA has lost Rs150 billion due to a ban in European countries since July 2020.

The UK Civil Aviation Authority suspended PIA flight operations over concerns that Pakistan is "not capable to certify and oversee its airline operators".

The decision came after the grounding of 262 Pakistani pilots whose licences former aviation minister Ghulam Sarwar Khan termed “dubious”.