Tourism and Civil Aviation Minister Rashed Khan Menon on Sunday emphasised finding out a local person for appointing as the managing director of the national flag carrier Biman Bangladesh Airlines.
He came up with the suggestion at a meeting with the Biman high-ups at its headquarters, Balaka.
“We want to pick a person from the country, if we fail to find out one from home we’ll then go out. If a foreigner can run Biman as MD then why can’t we do it,” Menon told UNB over telephone.
Kevin Steele, the first foreign managing director and chief executive officer of Biman Bangladesh Airlines who quit his post in January last, left here for home on Saturday morning.
Steele was appointed the managing director and chief executive officer of Biman in March last year on a two-year contract. But on January this year he submitted his resignation citing medical reasons, which the Board of Directors of Bangladesh Biman accepted last month with effect from April 17.
On April 9, Biman published a job vacancy advertisement in different newspapers, inviting deserving Bangladeshis and foreign nationals to apply for the job of Biman MD and CEO.
Menon also said that Biman should take steps to come out of its staggering losses.
In the first six months of the current fiscal, Biman incurred a loss of Tk 222 crore, according to Biman sources.
The minister asked the Biman officials to improve the revenue management and ticketing system.
He directed the national flag carrier to maintain its current flight schedules and improve it gradually. “I’ve told them to run Biman professionally,” he said.
Meeting sources said Menon at the meeting directed the officials of Biman to explore new profitable markets for it.
He also said the Dhaka-New York-Dhaka flight of Biman is a political commitment of the government and it has to be resumed.
The Civil Aviation Minister also put emphasis on the resumption of the domestic flights of Biman that has been suspended since 2008.
Meeting sources also said the minister expressed his dissatisfaction over the continuous losses Biman has been suffering since 2009.
After the transformation of Biman from Corporation to Limited Company, he said it had made profits for two years. “But, Biman then again plunged into losses.”