Big blow for PIA as Europe bans airline for six months over ‘pretend’ licences scandal

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Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) suffered an enormous blow because the European Union Air Safety Agency (EASA) suspended airline’s operations allow for a interval of six months, a spokesperson for the nationwide flag service stated on Tuesday.

The suspension will take impact on July 1, 2020 at 12 midday UTC time, he stated.

Therefore, all PIA flights to Europe have been briefly cancelled.

“Those who have a PIA booking can advance the date forward or get a refund,” the spokesperson stated.

“PIA is in constant contact with the agency,” he stated, including: “We are taking steps to address their concerns.”

“It is hoped that the suspension will end soon due to the [remedial] steps taken by the government and the administration,” the spokesperson stated.

‘Fake’ licences scandal

The move is an enormous blow to the airline, already below scrutiny the world over attributable to lately uncovered pitfalls inside Pakistan’s aviation trade, reminiscent of pilots possessing “dubious” credentials — or “fake” licences as put by Aviation Minister Ghulam Sarwar Khan.

The minister on Friday had introduced that the credentials of 262 pilots are “dubious” and thus they are going to be barred from flying.

The pilots within the line of fireside embody 141 from PIA, 9 from Air Blue and 10 from Serene Airline.

The remainder of the 262 belong to flying golf equipment or chartered aircraft providers, he stated. He stated all of the airways and the golf equipment had been conveyed that: “Their credentials are dubious, and they shouldn’t be allowed to fly.”

Last week, the International Air Transport Association (IATA) had expressed concern over the “serious lapse in licensing and safety oversight by the aviation regulator”.