Bidding for PIA privatisation scheduled for June 3

Bidding is scheduled following affirmations to foreign investors regarding political and economic stability in Pakistan

In a major step toward privatizing Pakistan International Airlines (PIA), Pakistan State Oil (PSO) has approved the sale, paving the way for the bidding process to start on June 3, 2024.

This decision follows the federal government’s request to initiate the privatisation of the national airline, amid efforts to address financial liabilities, including PIA’s Rs27 billion debt to PSO for fuel supplies.

The upcoming bidding, earmarked for June 3, 2024, comes after reassurances to foreign investors regarding Pakistan’s political stability and business environment.

These assurances were bolstered by the recent elections and the establishment of a new government, alongside improvements in the economic sector through the continuation of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) program.

A cabinet committee, led by the Minister for Defense and Aviation, has been formed to oversee the privatisation of PIA and the outsourcing of airport management.

This committee includes notable members such as the Ministers for Privatisation and Foreign Affairs, the Deputy Chairman of the Planning Commission, and secretaries from the Aviation and Privatization Commissions.

In preparation for the privatisation, the federal cabinet approved the formation of a new holding company, PIA Holding Company Limited (PIA HoldCo Ltd), on February 6.

This company will assume specific assets, liabilities, and subsidiaries from the PIA Corporation Ltd (PIACL), operating as a public limited entity under federal government ownership.

The authorised capital for PIA HoldCo is set at Rs53.5 billion, with an initial paid-up capital of Rs10,000 only.

The initial subscribers and first directors of PIA HoldCo Ltd will include secretaries from the Aviation, Finance, and Privatisation Divisions, with the CEO of PIACL also acting as the CEO of the new holding company until a permanent appointment is made.

 

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