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PM: Working to enhance Bangladesh’s air connectivity

  • Published at 12:43 pm October 23rd, 2019
Web_PM_6th-International-Flight-Safety-Seminar-Focus Bangla
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina addresses the closing ceremony of the three-day 6th International Flight Safety Seminar 2019, organized by Bangladesh Air Force and Civil Aviation Authority of Bangladesh (CAAB) at Hotel Pan Pacific Sonargaon on Wednesday, October 23, 2019 Focus Bangla

6th International Flight Safety Seminar concludes in Dhaka

The government is working to enhance Bangladesh’s air connectivity with the rest of the world, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina said on Wednesday. 

"We have procured 10 passenger carriers in the last 10 years, which include four 787 Dreamliners, two 737, and four 777 aircraft from Boeing,” she said while addressing the closing ceremony of the three-day 6th International Flight Safety Seminar, UNB reported.

The prime minister further said, the government was preparing to procure two more aircraft.

The seminar was jointly organized by Bangladesh Air Force, and the Civil Aviation Authority of Bangladesh (CAAB) at Hotel Pan Pacific Sonargaon, with the theme “Team Effort Can Ensure Team Safety.”

Sheikh Hasina attended wenesday’s closing session as the chief guest, and awarded certificates among the participants of the seminar, according to a press statement issued by the Inter-Service Public Relations Directorate (ISPR). 

Addressing the event, the prime minister extended her appreciation to all related organizations for creating the opportunity for sharing experience among civil, and military professionals. 

She hoped Biman Bangladesh Airlines would be able to operate flights on distant routes like New York, Toronto, and Sydney, UNB reported.  

“We are hopeful about it…the process to upgrade the CAAB to Category 1 is in progress,” she added.

Sheikh Hasina said the declaration of civil aviation in Bangladesh as Category 1 is just a matter of time under the International Safety Assessment Program by the US Federal Aviation Authority.

She said Bangladesh’s geological position can play the role of a bridge between the East, and the West of the world. 

"We can be benefited economically with this…international passengers can travel to their destinations in a short time. Keeping that in mind, we are developing our airports," she continued. 

Sheikh Hasina said the government is implementing a project to turn Cox’s Bazar airport into an international one through extending its runway up to 12,000 feet. 

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina pose for a group photo with others at the closing ceremony of the three-day 6th International Flight Safety Seminar 2019, organized by Bangladesh Air Force and Civil Aviation Authority of Bangladesh (CAAB) at Hotel Pan Pacific Sonargaon on Wednesday, October 23, 2019 | Focus BanglaThe construction work on Khan Jahan Ali Airport in Bagerhat is also in progress, she added.

The prime minister said with an ambition to increase connectivity with neighbouring countries like Nepal, Bhutan, and India, the government is modernizing Saidpur airport to upgrade it into an international airport. 

"Our government has taken a number of initiatives to make air trips accessible, comfortable, and safer. As part of this, construction of a third terminal at Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport is in progress," she further added. 

Sheikh Hasina said the government had passed a bill in parliament on “Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman Aviation and Aerospace University” with a goal to develop skilled human resources in the aviation sector.

She iterated the importance of safe flying operations, and urged everyone to acquire thorough practice and proper materialization, the ISPR statement said. 

“Bangladesh Air Force, and our Civil Aviation Authority have been maintaining relatively better and satisfactory standards in flight safety in the region,” The prime minister was quoted by UNB as saying.  

She said CAAB had recently obtained the coveted 75.46% marks in a flight safety survey conducted by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) – the highest score in Asia.

Recently, Biman also has achieved international Five Star award in safe aviation standards, UNB reported. 

The  6th International Flight Safety Seminar was attended by Bangladesh Air Force and CAAB, military and civil representatives from different countries. The other participating countries were the US, Italy, China, Malaysia, India, Sri Lanka, Maldives, the Philippines, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Oman, Morocco, Nigeria, and  Zimbabwe. 

This year, for the first time, two regional members of ICAO participated in the seminar, according to the ISPR statement.

Chief of Air Staff Air Chief Marshal Masihuzzaman Serniabat, and CAAB Air Vice Marshal (AVM) M Mafidur Rahman also spoke on the occasion.

State Minister for Civil Aviation and Tourism Md Mahbub Ali, Chief of Army Staff Gen Aziz Ahmed, and Chief of Naval Staff Admiral Aurangzeb Chowdhury were present at the event as well.