Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) had an estimated loss of over Rs146 billion during current government from 2013 to 2016, however, there were more losses incurred during the year 2016, the national assembly was informed yesterday.
Minister who oversees the Aviation told in a written reply to the question asked by the opposition in the national assembly that the national flag carrier had losses of Rs36,953 million, Rs32,539 million, Rs32,222 million and Rs44,322 million in the year 2016, 2015, 2014 and 2013 respectively.
However, there was a decreasing trend in losses from 2013 onwards, losses were declined by 27 percent during 2014 to 2015, the minister said. The financial accounts of the company are not finalized as yet, during 2016 surge in losses occurred due to an acquisition of new aircraft on lease and the payment of interest on legacy loans, he added.
Replying another question the minister said, Airbus A310 with registration number AP-BAQ was sold for €47,500 to Leipzig Museum in Germany with the approval of former CEO Bernd Hildenbrand.
He also said due to some discrepancies in the application of PPRA rules 2004 for the sale of aircraft an internal inquiry found Hildenbrand guilty of violations, Hildenbrand was later sacked by PIA. Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) is reportedly probing the said matter and the findings are not unveiled yet.
Answering another question by Dr. Nafisa Shah whether an aircraft was leased from Sri Lanka at much higher rates, the minister said, PIA bought A330 from Sri Lankan airlines for 6 months only till August 2016 and at the rate of $8,100 per block hour.
However, the aircraft was acquired through competitive bidding process according to PPRA rules, the Sri Lankan airline was finalized due to the lowest bidder who successfully met the tender requirements. This matter is also under investigation by FIA and the findings are awaited.