Afghanistan suffers revenue loss of USD 8M affected by Pakistan’s airspace closure: Civil aviation authority

Afghanistan’s civil aviation authority has on Monday said the country was suffering an estimated revenue loss worth USD eight million just in a month affected by the closure of Pakistan’s airspace.

According to ANI news reports, Islamabad had shut its airspace since late in February amid tension escalation with India following Pulwama terror attack on February 14 in Jammu and Kashmir on Indian paramilitary’s convoy which claimed the lives of 44 CRPF personnel.

However, the airspace was opened to some flights but was yet to be reopened for Afghanistan flights en route to India.

Due to Pakistan airspace closure, Kabul airlines, who have been using Iranian route for Kabul-New Delhi flights, has hiked the costs including time by two times. But, the airlines continued to receive losses in the country’s revenues.

A Chairman of Afghan civil aviation authority, Mohammad Qasim Wafaeezada, said there were six routes (air) through Islamabad’s airspace between New Delhi and Kabul.

More than 250 flights used to cross Afghan’s airspace towards Islamabad on a daily basis, but due to the closure, the number has reduced to nine.

Wafaeezada was quoted as saying, “We hope this issue is resolved as soon as possible, otherwise we will lose a big amount of revenues we get from transit flights.”

Meanwhile, Kabul-based airlines urged the government to hold discussions with the government of Pakistan to resolve the issue as soon as possible, keeping in tune with foreign regulations and laws.



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