GMG gets license to fly on int'l routes
By Staff Reporter
Jan 5, 2004, 12:29
GMG Airlines was issued Air Transport Operating License (ATOL) by the Civil Aviation Authority of Bangladesh (CAAB) yesterday to fly on international routes.
This decision by CAAB comes after GMG Airlines was issued Provisional ATOL on September 25 last and its subsequent fulfilling all requirements as per Civil Aviation Rules of 1984.
The decision opens a new chapter in the civil aviation sector of Bangladesh. Initially, GMG Airlines has been given permission to fly on three routes--Dhaka to Colombo via Chennai, Dhaka to Male via Colombo and from Chittagong to Chiang Mai of Thailand.
GMG Airlines, which started its operations on April 6, 1998 is the only surviving private airline of Bangladesh and has earned itself the permission to fly on international routes after providing efficient and reliable services for all these years.
The airline has developed the required infrastructure to operate on international routes. It is a member of IATA's MITA (Multilateral Interline Traffic Agreement) and also of IATA's clearing house.
As the final step to start operations on international routes, GMG Airlines now only needs the necessary permissions from the governments of destination countries and is ready to start its international operations as soon as these clearances are received.
In a statement, GMG Airlines yesterday said it welcomed the historical decision and planned to start operations within three months after obtaining some more additional routes to ensure adequate aircraft utilisation.
Again, a very protectionist approach by the government. I can't see how having three very questionable routes would allow GMG any profits on the international sector. At least a CGP-BKK route should be considered, along with CGP-CCU and DAC-CCU and even DAC-KTM, CGP-KTM and DAC-DEL. GMG has an amazing resilience. It has been fighting BG on all fronts, being treated as the unwanted step-child by the CAAB. It's a shame. GMG is run so much more efficiently than Biman, and given the opportunity, I am sure it could be provide a great service to and from Bangladesh.
Planemannyc From United States of America, joined Aug 2003, 997 posts, RR: 8 Reply 2, posted (9 years 11 months 5 days 12 hours ago) and read 1999 times:
Last I heard GMG was shopping for B737s. When I spoke to the CEO of GMG last year, he said it was going to be an MD-80 or B737 most likely, and subsequently, I did see an online ad for B737. However, I wonder whether they can fill either type on the routes they have obtained. Sad. B737/MD-80/A320 can be easily filled between DAC-CCU / DAC-KTM / DAC-DEL / CGP-BKK and of course Bangladesh-Middle East if CAAB were to allow GMG on those routes.
I wonder If Air Sahara or JetAirways pushes for CCU/BOM/DEL - DAC flights, whether the govenrment would allow GMG to compete on those lines. It's silly of the government not to encourage GMG. If GMG goes in some of those market before the Indian private carriers, it stands a chance of getting a nice marketshare. I doubt Biman can match either of the private Indian carriers on any route, given that pricing will not be the issue, service will.
GMG gears up for international flights
Kazi Shamsul Amin
GMG Airlines is likely to begin its debut international flight in mid-January. After getting the provisional air transport operation licence (P-ATOL) on September 25, the country’s only domestic operational airline in the private sector is now set to submit the necessary documents for ATOL.
A reliable source in the GMG airlines told New Age that they would submit all necessary documents for ATOL by the end of this month.
“If everything goes smoothly, we will be able to fly international routes at the beginning of next year, most likely by mid-January,” he asserted.
The GMG airlines got the provisional licence following a government decision earlier this year to open up international routes to local private airlines.
Apart from GMG, Air Bangladesh was also given provisional licence to operate on international routes.
He also said that a consultant has been preparing documents on security management, crisis management, etc. as per International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) standards, which is a prerequisite to get ATOL.
After getting the documents, the Civil Aviation Authority of Bangladesh (CAAB) will send them to respective countries where GMG would like to start operation.
“We preferred the Middle East routes in addition to regional routes like Kolkata, New Delhi, Mumbai, Kathmandu and Colombo,” he said.
The GMG source also said that with the existing fleet, which includes three Dash-8 aircraft, they would be able to begin Dhaka-Kolkata flights.
“We are also at a final stage in procuring a Boeing 737, the purchase of which will depend upon the allocation of routes by CAAB”, he added.
Planemannyc From United States of America, joined Aug 2003, 997 posts, RR: 8 Reply 5, posted (9 years 11 months 5 days 10 hours ago) and read 1923 times:
I believe CGP is a victim of government inaction -- not market forces. So far, CAAB only does not allow any other airline other than Biman on the lucrative CGP-Mid East market.
The government has not also urged the Singaporean government to either make it easier for Bangladeshi nationals to obtain visas to Singapore easier or allowed SilkAir 5th Freedom rights to Yangon. The Singaporean government can perhaps be at fault here as well. Because of requirements of in person interviews for visas at the Singapore High Commission in Dhaka for most Bangladeshis -- and the time for visa approvals being around 2 weeks -- people from Chittagong were less willing to fly Silk Air to Singapore. If one has to go to Dhaka to obtain a visa, he or she could also avail more choices out of Dhaka to Singapore.
Thai Airways on the other hand has realized the difficulties faced by the Chittagong passenger, and has requested the Thai government to open a visa office in the city. The Thai government is doing so shortly. In the meantime, the Thai Embassy in Dhaka is facilitating visa processing without in person interviews for many passengers.
The new CGP airport has the facilities to handle a lot more traffic, only if the Bangladesh government would work on the potential. CGP-DXB, CGP-AUH, CGP-MCT, CGP-KWI, CGP-DOH has tremendous potential. If the government granted Indian and other South Asian nationals visas on arrival, CGP-CCU, CGP-DEL, CGP-BOM, CGP-KTM could become potential markets as well.
Travellin'man From United States of America, joined May 2001, 530 posts, RR: 0 Reply 6, posted (9 years 11 months 3 days 10 hours ago) and read 1850 times:
Chittagong is a thriving port city, so it stands to reason that the potential for air traffic is there as well, both pax and cargo. I agree that it is mostly govt machinations that limit what the airport can do. Its a shame because it's a beautiful airport, so much nicer than Zia. I hate having to go through there to get to CGP; it often adds another flight and a day to my already long trip from the West Coast.
It is not enough to be rude; one must also be incorrect.
Planemannyc From United States of America, joined Aug 2003, 997 posts, RR: 8 Reply 7, posted (9 years 11 months 3 days 10 hours ago) and read 1840 times:
Where do you fly from? I think Thai should have had a mixed offerings of non-stops from Chiang Mai and Bangkok. It takes a good amount of time to fly between Bangkok and Chittagong with a stop in Chiang Mai. On the other hand, I would think that there may be enough demand between Dhaka and Chiang Mai -- a route not served by any airlines.
Also, CGP-HKG might have some potential as well CGP-KUL. However, the big markets are in the ME from CGP.