Local aviation along with global is shutting down because of the coronavirus outbreak and travel restrictions designed to contain it, and many airlines will need government bailouts or face bankruptcy.
Airlines across the world are grounding planes, laying off workers and scrambling to preserve cash while in Bangladesh it still continue as usual, a general manager of Novoair said.
The three major global Bangladesh alliances, Biman Bangladesh Airlines, Novo Air, US Bangla urged government to “evaluate all possible means” to assist the industry.
According to CAPA Centre for Aviation, a consultancy, most airlines in the world will be bankrupt by the end of May unless governments intervene.
“Coordinated government and industry action is needed — now — if catastrophe is to be avoided,” the firm said in a report published Monday.
“Cash reserves are running down quickly as fleets are grounded, and what flights there are operate much less than half full,” it added.
Group Captain AHM Touhid-ul Ahsan, director of Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport (HSIA) told that most airlines had to cancel their flights due to a lack of passengers following the Covid-19 crisis.
“Ticket sales of at least 25 airlines of the total 28 international air carriers that operate in Bangladesh have dropped,” he added.
Biman Managing director Md Mokabbir Hossain said 85 out of 142 flights were cancelled due to a passenger crisis amid the Covid-19 outbreak.
On the other hand, US-Bangla Airlines, which operates eight flights on international routes, is also witnessing a major fall out in business as it get only 40 per cent of its seats booked because of the global epidemic.
“We are observing the developments of the sector. We do not know how to overcome this situation which is now out of control,” said US-Bangla Airlines General Manager (Media) Kamrul Islam.
Novoair Airlines Senior Manager (marketing, sales) A K M Mahfuzul Alam said that a large number of passengers had cancelled their ticket bookings due to fear of the virus.