ISLAMABAD: Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) is currently holding talks with Afghanistan to expand commercial flight operations and cargo business so that bilateral trade cold be facilitated.
According to a statement issued by the national flag carrier, PIA Chief Executive officer (CEO) Air Marshal (r) Arshad Malik met Afghan Aviation Head Dr Qasim Wafaizada in Kabul and discussed avenues for increasing air links between the two countries.
The top PIA official informed Afghan authorities that PIA is planning to start flights to/from Kandahar and Mazar Shareef and is exploring avenues for increasing air cargo operations.
Meanwhile, during his visit to Pakistan’s embassy in Kabul, the PIA chief urged Pakistan’s ambassador to Afghanistan to ensure a swift guaranteed visa for PIA passengers coming to Pakistan.
He also met with officials of the Afghan Chamber of Commerce and Industry and proposed expanding PIA’s network to the business centers of Afghanistan.
Enduring losses over billions of rupees, the national flag carrier has been struggling financially for a long time after various flights were grounded in March last year because of the ongoing pandemic. However, according to the PIA’s turnaround plan, the year “2021 would be a break-even year followed by a return to profitability in 2023”.