Feb 12, 2017

SriLankan – PIA Aircraft deal comes to an abrupt end

Much boosted Sri Lankan Airlines three A 330 Aircraft wet lease deal with Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) signed in August last year came to an abrupt end on Friday 10, following PIA’s action to terminate the agreement after six months and send back the A-330 aircraft taken by them.

Good governance activists said that Minister of Public Enterprises Development Kabir Hashim should make a statement in Parliament on the deal which was kept as a secret by Sri Lankan Airlines top management.

The Minister should also table the details of the profit or loss caused to the country and any corrupt practices of officials involved in the aircraft deal as this government came to power pledging to be transparent in all of its dealings, they said.

The wet lease was signed for six months to start with and during that time PIA agreed to take 3 A330- 300 Airbus and convert the lease to dry lease.

Amid requests to revise the lease agreement and bring down the lease payment for the first aircraft which was in possession of the PIA entering into dry lease agreement with other two air craft at a discount payment, Sri Lankan Airlines- PIA deal never materialized as planned.

PIA has not taken the remaining 2 A 330’s under the deal from Sri Lankan Airlines even though the crew was trained by Sri Lankan Airline’s officers, PIA aviation officials said.

In the meantime the PIA has called international bids on Monday 6 to acquire A-330 aircraft on wet lease and selected Turkish Airlines to award the tender rejecting the Sri Lankan Airlines bid which was forced to bid for the tender as it has no other option.

Turkish Airlines A330 aircraft which is to be used by the PIA is 2 years and 8 months old and it has a General Electric engine with better business class seats than the Sri Lankan Airline’s aircraft. Turkish Airlines provides engineering for the plane but Sri Lankan Airlines has no such offer.

“Sri Lankan” has lost the tender during the final evaluation, PIA aviation officials said. They pointed out that the Federal Investigation Agency is now conducting probe into the “Sri Lankan Airlines ” deal alleged by Pakistani officials for corrupt practices.

The aircraft will rejoin the Sri Lankan fleet after it is repainted in our livery within the next couple of weeks, the airline said.

However the Sri Lankan Airlines says the highly successful six-month commercial contract by which SriLankan Airlines ‘wet leased’ an Airbus A330-300 aircraft on Aircraft, Crew, Maintenance and Insurance (ACMI) basis with Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) has been completed following a flawless operation throughout the duration of the period of the contract.