Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) could potentially face pressure from its investors as it failed to offer any positive news during the past few months. As per information released by the Aviation Division, the Premier Services of the national carrier suffered a loss of approximately PKR 2.1 billion during 14th August 2016 to 31st December 2016.
The national carrier launched its Premier Services on 14th August 2016 that includes new and improved services such as better display screens with more viewing options, spacious and more comfortable seating, and a well-trained cabin crew.
The airline generated almost PKR 1.8 billion in revenue from its Premier Service during 14th August 2016 to 31st December 2016. Also, the total expenditure incurred on starting its Premier Service was approximately PKR 3.9 billion, as stated by Aviation Division.
PIA has been struggling to attract passengers to use its services, following the tragic crash of PIA flight PK-661. Many analysts believe that this might be one of the reasons for declining revenues.
On a different note, it was recently reported that the CEO of PIA, Bernd Hildenbrand, is being investigated because of alleged misappropriation of funds in the purchase of aircrafts. His name has been put on the Exit Control List (ECL) in order to stop him from any foreign travel and is to remain in the list until the completion of further investigation against him by the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA).
Previously, rumors had been making rounds that PIA is planning to shut down its Premier Services, but the company later denied the rumors and confirmed that it has no plans to stop offering its Premier Services. Labelling all these rumors “baseless”, PIA Spokesman Daniyal Gilani commented that the national airline’s staff was successfully operating flight operations of the Premier Service that was inaugurated on Independence Day last year. Gilani said due to the success of the new venture, the service will continue.
The airline has been making its efforts to offer improved services to its passengers through its Premier Service. For instance, it had acquired a Sri Lankan airlines aircraft to include in the Premier Service last year.
The spokesman said since an aircraft cannot be wet-leased for more than six months according to the National Aviation Policy, thus a tender to acquire new planes had been made and new aircraft would be obtained on wet lease on lowest rates.