• Trouble created by the crash of Turkish Airlines in Nepal

    09 Mar

    A strong feeling of disappointment could be clearly observed in the face of tourist at the Arrival Terminal who were here to have the glimpse of “The Land of Peace”, that they had heard about in their country. If they too believe in “first impression is the last impression”, then I doubt for their revisit or recommendation to others.


    Nepal Aviation Sector has been experiencing a downturn since the landing failure of Turkish Airlines on Wednesday 4th of March last week. A whole 4 days halt of International Airlines from Tribhuwan International Airport, the only international airport of Nepal, was just the casting of troubles that were ought to come. From airways to roadways almost everything are facing the aftermath of Turkish Landing Failure. Passengers are equally having their piece of Trouble Pie.

    After the runway clearance on the dusk of 7th March, Saturday the TIA officials reported to operate the International Airport continuously for 24 hours. This commitment proved to be senseless commitment with no proper planning, management and ability. Being a single runway airport with lesser parking space flights are facing a serious air traffic complications. The flights are neither being able to take off nor land according to their respective scheduled timing. Diverting from the route or just hovering over the sky are the only options available for the airlines and ATCs to manage traffic.

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    Long hectic journey were just not enough for the passengers that now they have to wait for countless hours searching effortlessly for their baggage at the baggage counter. Inadequate number of baggage trolley is another major problem for the stressed passengers. The verse “Is Taxi available?” has dramatically changed into “Is trolley available?” since last two days. Some reach out for trolleys and the rest, they just have no option than to give some extra burden to their stressed body. The same situation is at the Departure Terminal.

    Now comes for the so called Law-abiding government officials, airport staffs and security officials. They are so determined for their work and obedient to the orders that they have even forgot the most important lessons of their life ‘Humanity’. Observing their work, it seems like the feeling of love, help, and brotherhood was never implanted onto their brain. But this could the condition of all if he/she is made to work continuously for long hours without proper rest in that sort of mess condition. The airport merely looks like an international airports, rather it depicts more over a fish market impression.

    Crowded Check-in counter of TIA

    Crowded Check-in counter of TIA

    The series of trouble might be incomplete without mentioning about the people who with great joy and delight are there to receive their loved ones. If someone is keen to observe a practical understanding of Darvin`s “Survival Of The fittest” theory then surely TIA entrance gate could be the best example I could give. A whole mass of people who are there to receive, are struggling at the entrance gate just to enter the TIA premises. A strong feeling of disappointment could be clearly observed in the face of tourist at the Arrival Terminal who were here to have the glimpse of “The Land of Peace”, that they had heard about in their country. If they too believe in “first impression is the last impression”, then I doubt for their revisit or recommendation to others.

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    Not only air traffic but Turkish has brought even road traffic with its landing failure. Traffic condition inside TIA has almost exceeded the control ability of TIA, which has a direct effect on the nearby road traffic condition of TIA.

    If TIA officials are progressive, wants success and uplift TIA then the major lesson they must learn is “Cut the coat according to your cloth”.

    Read about the Most popular sector : Kathmandu to Pokhara flight

  • NAC to get 6 Chinese planes under grant,loan agreement

    07 Jan

    Nepal Airlines Corporation (NAC) will be buying new planes for the first time in 26 years. On Thursday, the governments of Nepal and China signed a grant and concessional loan agreement worth Rs 6.67 billion (408 million RMB) to procure six aircraft. Two of the planes will arrive within three months and join the carrier’s domestic fleet which now consists of one vintage Twin Otter.

    As part of the accord, China will provide a 58-seater MA60 and a 19-seater Y12e worth Rs 2.94 billion as a gift and a soft loan of Rs 3.72 billion to buy one MA60 and three Y12e planes. The last time the venerable flag carrier procured aircraft was in 1987. Meanwhile, it has two Airbus A320s on order for its international fleet, the first of which will be delivered in 2015.
    The Chinese deal consists of three separate agreements-framework agreement on provision of concessional loan assistance, economic and technical cooperation agreement for grant assistance and government concessional loan agreement. The repayment period of the soft loan from the Export-Import Bank of China to NAC is 20 years. It carries an annual interest of 1.5 percent. NAC has been given a grace period of seven years which means it will not have to start paying back the loan till then.
    Finance Secretary Shanta Raj Subedi and Ambassador of China to Nepal Wu Chuntai signed the agreement on behalf of their respective countries.
    The Cabinet on November 14 had given its go-ahead for the government to sign loan and grant agreements with China to procure six aircraft for the national flag carrier.
    Normally, the government funds public entities at an interest rate of 6-8 percent. “The interest rate for NAC has not been fixed,” said NAC Managing Director Madan Kharel. “There will be discussion on the issue soon.” Kharel added that the package included spares parts and training for pilots and technicians.
    Finance Secretary Subedi said Thursday’s agreement would help NAC consolidate its domestic market share. “We expect that air services will be enhanced in most remote destinations and also promote the country’s tourism,” Subedi said.
    He also directed the management to form a conducive business plans to lift NAC’s financial condition. “The corporation now has to focus on commercializing its business by providing quality service,” he added.
    Meanwhile, Chinese Ambassador Chuntai said they would be providing an MA60 and a Y12E aircraft in the next three months. He expressed his hope that the aircraft would help improve NAC’s business. “It could play a vital role in enhancing the tourism industry besides promoting the airlines business.”
    The deal, according to the NAC, will help it regain its lost glory and market share. In the domestic market, NAC is way behind private carriers in terms of market share.
    It plans to increase its share of the domestic market to 40 percent from the present 3 percent after the new planes arrive. “We have already prepared a detailed business plan to operate the aircraft so that we can receive the optimum benefits,” Kharel added.
    NAC plans to operate the aircraft on long-haul sectors, including the lucrative Himalayan excursion Mountain Flight, and a number of tourist destinations.
    On October 22, the Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal (CAAN) issued type certificate to Chinese-made MA60 aircraft, allowing the plane to enter the Nepali skies for the first time for civilian transport. However,
    On November 29, 2012, NAC signed a commercial agreement with AVIC International Holdings, a Chinese government undertaking, to procure the six aircraft.  On August 7, 2011, NAC wrote to the Finance Ministry, requesting it to purchase eight aircraft under foreign grants. In November 2011, the ministry requested China to provide aircraft either in grant or under soft loans. The Chinese side responded positively, expressing readiness to provide some aircraft in grant and some under soft loans.