PIA Discontinues Direct Flights to USA as it Starts Cost Cutting Program

Pakistan International Airlines’ (PIA) new management has decided to cut down costs on different routes. PIA has put an end to direct flights to USA and will be getting rid of extra employees.

An official source from PIA said that the board of directors and government have given a go head for the cost cutting and cleansing drive. New PIA management has started working on these lines and the sacking of the Chief of Human Resource department was the first step in this regard.

PIA management has asked the Human Resource department to make lists of surplus employees of the airline. This list is to be made based on departments and has to be submitted to the senior management in a week’s time.

After the preparation of the list, the management will present it to the board of directors. After approval from the board, these employees will be sent to the surplus pool. This list will include Chief officers of up to group one level.

“It is estimated that about 1000 to 1500 out of 14 thousand employees will be sent to the surplus pool. These employees will then be given a chance to adjust in different department conditions depending on availability of vacancies and educational background,” the source told ProPakistani.

After this, PIA will cut costs from flight operations. Flight to the United States will be discontinued from October 31, 2017. PIA flies to the USA five times and has been incurring losses of up to Rs. 1.25 billion annually. PIA had been operating flights to the US since 1961 without any disruption.

PIA had decided several times in the past to discontinue US flights due to the financial losses, however, it faced pressure from different parties which hindered its plans.

After stopping direct flights to the US, PIA will enter into a code-sharing agreement with an American airline. US-bound passengers will be flown to London, where they will then be transferred to the American airline, which will take them to the US, the sources said.

“PIA is the first airline which bought long haul Boeing 777 in order fly directly to the USA. However, USA backed out and direct flights were not allowed. Now PIA flights have to land in the UK for security and migration checks and cargo reloading. This causes huge losses to PIA,” informed the source.

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