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Senate Committee on Finance reviews PIA's privatization scheme

ISLAMABAD: Senate's Standing Committee on Finance reviewed the method of privatization of Pakistan International Airlines (PIA), while the members of the committee strongly opposed it during the meeting – ARY News reports.

The meeting of the standing committee was chaired by the Chairman Nasreen Jalil. Members of the committee expressed their grave concerns on PIA privatization.

Senator Islamuddin Sheikh criticized the officials of Ministries of Finance and Privatization. He vowed that no institutions will be allowed to be privatized including PIA for doing so the PIA workers will be unemployed.

Senator Usman Saifullah stated that some fool will purchase an institution operating in deficit and if it is sold out in this condition then it will be sold against few pennies.

Haji Adeel said if the Metro Bus can be run by the Government in Lahore, then why not the PIA. He opposed to handover the national airliner to private sector.

Adeel further added that the deficit can be reduced by selling out hotels and poultry farms of PIA. He stated that 'pilot mafia' devastated the national institution, pilots ruined PIA routes only for having fun in Europe and America.

On this occasion, Deputy Managing Director PIA Qasim Masood told the committee that he is unaware of its privatization, while the Secretary Privatization Commission, Amjad Ali elaborated that no date has been finalized regarding the privatization of PIA, this can take even 3 years.

Secretary Finance, Waqar Masood explained that PIA's deficit is about 152 billion rupees and it is being given bail-out package for the past 12 years.

He added that the current Government has reduced the monthly deficit of PIA from Rs 3 billion to 1.5 billion in 3 months only and the national asset shall not be privatized in haste.

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