ISLAMABAD: Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs Shaikh Afatb Ahmed Friday said that the government under the vision of Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif was trying to turn Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) into profitable entity.
“The present government has awarded a package of Rs 12.70 billion to the PIA for its restructuring” adding that Rs 7 billion had been released in this regard on the directive of the prime minister.
The minister made these remarks while responding to questions raised by members during the Question Hour.
He said the PIA faced loss of about Rs 60 billion during 2011-2012 due to mismanagement, loans and ignorance of the previous PPP government.
The minister said that due to losses in the PIA, the new government had imposed a ban on fresh appointments.
Shaikh Aftab said that the PIA has a fleet of 32 aircraft and out of those, ten aircraft had been grounded and the government’s package would help bring the ten aircraft in the system.
The minister said that six small aircraft would be procured on lease for PIA to provide better travelling facilities to the domestic travellers and a tender in this regard has been floated in the newspapers.
Responding a supplement question, Shaikh Aftab said the government was giving priority to the early completion of Islamabad International Airport.
The minister said that PIA has 22 aircraft and 600 pilots, adding that there were 19000 employees working in PIA.
To another question, the minister stated that the closed small airports would be made operational after getting new aircraft to facilitate the passengers.