Biman Bangladesh Airlines has started procedure for adding four aircraft to its fleet to secure more share of passengers by increasing flight frequencies to all seven domestic routes.
Among the four aircraft, the national flag carrier will purchase three Dash 8 Q400 aircraft and get another one on lease from Bombardier, Canada.
"We are expecting to get the aircraft by next year to increase our domestic flight frequency," Biman's Managing Director and CEO Mosaddek Ahmed told BSS today.
Currently, Biman is operating its domestic and regional routes by using two Dash 8 Q400 aircraft, acquired in 2015 on lease basis for five years.
"We need more narrow body aircraft for our fleet to continue operations on both domestic and regional routes as the lease agreement for the existing two will be expired in 2020," Ahmed said.
According to official concerned, Canadian Commercial Company has already given a proposal to the Civil Aviation and Tourism Ministry for completing the purchase procedure of three aircraft on government to government (G-to-G) procurement basis. Export Development Canada (EDC) has also offered Biman the required fund for purchasing the aircraft.
The Civil Aviation and Tourism Ministry is set to send a proposal for purchasing the three aircraft to the Executive Committee of the National Economic Council (ECNEC) soon for getting nod.
Currently, the national flag carrier is facing difficulty to maintain its domestic schedule due to scarcity of aircraft, Biman's General Manager for public relations Shakil Meraj said.
"After purchasing the aircraft, we will be able to improve our performance and increase flight frequencies on different domestic and regional routes," he said.
Biman is now operating seven domestic routes and some regional routes by Dash 8 Q400 aircraft. The domestic destinations from Dhaka include Chittagong, Cox's Bazar, Sylhet, Jessore, Rajshahi, Saidpur and Barishal while Kolkata, Kathmandu and Yangon are the major regional destinations.