Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) is focusing on corporate customers for business generation and business community should facilitate the airline in improving its cargo business, said PIA Chief Executive Officer Arshad Malik.

Talking to the business community at the Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ICCI), he said that the airline was ready to set aside aircraft for cargo flights if the private sector supported it with higher business volumes.

He pointed out that PIA needed an advisory board with representation from business chambers.

“PIA will start direct flights to Baku from Lahore and to Uzbekistan from March this year,” he said.

Malik highlighted that PIA was facing an extremely challenging situation but he was determined to address its difficulties.

In the past, PIA did not have commercial sense, however, with stringent efforts of the present professional team, the national air carrier was put back on track, he underlined.

“Covid-19 has badly dented the aviation industry,” he said. “The outlook of PIA will change and old aircraft will be swapped with better quality and competitive aircraft.”

The CEO clarified that PIA headquarters was not being shifted, rather there was a shift in its business model and the airline was now inclined towards northern and southern regions for business promotion because 70% of the commercial activity emerged in those areas.

Published in The Express Tribune, February 23rd, 2021.

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