Vol. 5 Num 1091 Tue. June 26, 2007  
Front Page

Biman's PLC plan delayed by 3 weeks

Biman Bangladesh Airlines will be turned into a public limited company (PLC) by July and not June 30 as was scheduled earlier, Civil Aviation Adviser MA Matin said yesterday.

"Government needs more time to amend some of the related laws for the changeover," he told reporters after the annual meeting of Biman board held at the civil aviation and tourism ministry.

Changes have to be made in the draft ordinance for making the national airlines a PLC, he said without giving details.

Sources in the ministry however said the process is being delayed as the Council of Advisers differed on some of the points in the draft ordinance. The council wants to review the proposed Memorandum of Association (rules and regulations of Biman) and Articles of Association (terms and conditions) contained in the draft ordinance.

Biman's proposed name -- Bangladesh Airlines Limited -- is one of the points of difference, the sources said.

The adviser hoped Biman would certainly have better days when a private operator is appointed for it.

Replying to a question, he said action against corrupt Biman staffs could not be taken due to lack of evidence.

Earlier on June 23, the council approved the draft ordinance on Biman's turning into a PLC.

On May 19, it approved some steps to complete this process by June 30.

The government has selected Phuket Air of Thailand for carrying Hajj pilgrims, Matin said.

It will carry some 22 thousand pilgrims to Saudi Arabia.

Phuket was selected out of seven airlines that took part in the tender process, the adviser added.

Biman got $22 million from the insurance companies concerned as compensation for damage of an aircraft of the national flag carrier at Dubai International Airport on March 12, Matin told the media.

The Dhaka-bound Airbus developed wheel disorders while taking off, forcing the airport to suspend its operations for about eight hours.

No severe injury was reported in the accident involving the BG 006 flight on London-Dubai-Dhaka route. The Airbus was bought in 1996.

The insurance companies--Messrs AON in London and Messrs CTC-- were immediately informed of the incident.