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PIA resumes flight operations for Kuwait

The PIA is operating charter flights between Paris and Islamabad. Source: PIA.

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) has resumed its Kuwait operation after it was allowed to operate in the Sultanate.

PIA had been banned from operating to Kuwait in May 2021, as a measure to mitigate the spread of the coronavirus pandemic, even though the Kuwaiti carriers continued to serve Pakistan.

On October 1, the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) reduced the number of flights of the two Kuwaiti airlines to Pakistan after the Gulf state granted permission to PIA to resume flights operations to the country.

The matter was first raised by PIA at the diplomatic level but permission was not granted.

Reliable sources say that the national airline was allowed to operate in Kuwait under pressure from the federal government and the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA). The PIA has decided to launch the Kuwait operation with two weekly flights.

CEO PIA Arshad Malik thanked the aviation minister and the aviation secretary for materializing the ban-lifting.

Earlier last month, the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) had requested Kuwait’s Directorate General of Civil Aviation to allow PIA to resume flights to and from the Gulf state.

“While our national air carrier has been vehemently pursuing operating flights to/from Kuwait, approval for the same has not been granted by your esteemed Authority and our letter has also not been responded to,” a reminder sent to Kuwait’s aviation regulator by CAA read.

“In cognizance of the spirit of reciprocity, it was our desire that your esteemed Authority may approve the requested flight operation of PIAC to/from Kuwait especially in the backdrop of the utmost facilitation that has been extended by Pakistan CAA to Kuwait designated airlines despite the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic.”