Airlines fail to operate

Kathmandu, July 31:

Despite the growth in the number of airline companies registered at the Civil Aviation Authority for Airlines Operating Certification (AOC), only half of them are operational. Among 38 airlines which acquired an AOC in the fiscal year 2004-05, only 17 are in operation currently. Some airlines are involved in entertainment and aviation sports sector, states 2004-05 economic survey released recently. So far, domestic airlines are providing service in Kathmandu, Bajura, Doti, Jumla, Nepalgunj, Janakpur, Rajbiraj, Biratnagar, Pokhara and Bajhang.

In a bid to boost air service business, infrastructure facilities at Biratnagar, Bhairahawa and Nepalgunj airports are being upgraded, which are planned to be developed as hub airports, states the survey. Biratnagar airport has been upgraded and it now has night landing facility. Airlines are being encouraged to fly to remote areas to provide services to the poor, states the government report. The government has also approved aerodrome certification regulation 2060.

The authority has also made a provision for free flow of information to the people related to air transportation to inform public and concerned authorities effectively. “With the financial assistance from Asian Development Bank (ADB), an expansion plan is being developed to improve the runaway at the Biratnagar airport,” states the report.