KATHMANDU, SEPTEMBER 9
The Ministry of Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation has directed Nepal Airlines Corporation to proceed with the procurement of aircraft for domestic sector.
During a meeting held with NAC Executive Chairman Sushil Ghimire and other department heads, Tourism Minister Yogesh Bhattarai directed NAC to prepare aircraft procurement plan immediately.
Citing a huge loss, NAC had recently grounded all six Chinese aircraft that it had been using for domestic flights.
“Consequently, the national flag carrier has only two Twin Otters left in its fleet which is not enough for the operation of domestic flights,” Bhattarai said.
Stating that NAC has to be responsible towards the general public being a national flag carrier, he added, “Considering flight operations in remote areas, NAC has to purchase aircraft as soon as possible.”
Bhattarai also directed NAC to take necessary action to prepare a draft for the operation of NAC on public-private partnership model. He directed NAC to begin discussion with Citizen Investment Trust, Employees Provident Fund, MoCTCA and the Ministry of Finance to prepare a draft for the operation of NAC in PPP model.
The minister also directed NAC to utilise its land that has not been used for commercial purposes. “NAC is reeling under a huge debt burden at this moment. It has to utilise its land at 23 locations across the country for commercial purposes to increase its income,”
Bhattarai said, adding, “Do not take any step that will add to the financial burden of the corporation.”
He directed NAC to implement cost-cutting measures, lay off redundant staffers deployed in foreign destinations, reduce meeting allowances and slash 50 per cent additional allowances and facilities of board members of NAC and retired staffers.