Bangladesh’s aviation sector will nearly triple over the next 15 years, Minister of State for Civil Aviation, Md Mahbub Ali, said today.
Bangladesh’s aviation sector nearly doubled in 2017, while passenger and cargo transportation grew at a rate of about 10 percent over the past 10 years, he also said.
The Minister said this during an address held at Jashore airport on the occasion of the start of US Bangla Airlines direct flights on the Jashore-Chattogram and Jashore-Cox’s Bazar routes.
Later, the Deputy Minister inaugurated a direct flight of US Bangla Airlines on Saidpur-Chattogram route during another reception at Saidpur airport.
Mahbub Ali said, “We have a plan to purchase cargo planes to export the country’s agricultural products to the international market. Flowers and agricultural products from Jashore will be exported to different countries.”
The Minister of State said that investment in the aviation sector has also increased along with other businesses.
In addition to the state carrier, two private airlines are also doing well in the aviation business, he said.
“They have won the trust of customers with their services. Day by day, they are increasing their number of destinations on international and domestic routes. The scope of their business is expanding.”
US-Bangla Airlines Managing Director (MD), Mohammad Abdullah Al Mamun, said US-Bangla Airlines started its journey in 2014 with just two planes and 150 employees. The airline currently has 14 new aircraft in its fleet.
He said they plan to operate more flights by purchasing 16 new aircraft over the next two years. These planes will fly from Dhaka to all countries in the Middle East, Rome in Italy, Toronto in Canada and Heathrow in London.
He said Biman Bangladesh Airlines and US-Bangla Airlines currently operate international flights from Bangladesh. These two airlines hold only 18-20% of the aviation market in Bangladesh. Foreign airlines hold the remaining 80%.
He also said that when a Bangladeshi expat returns home on a Malaysian Airlines or Singapore Airlines flight, his remittance stays in that country. We retain remittances of Tk 4,000 crore by operating flights on these routes. We plan how to maintain 50% market share by increasing flights on international routes.