PIA gets Saudi’s nod to operate Al-Qassim flights


KARACHI : Saudi Arabia’s General Authority of Civil Aviation (GACA) has granted Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) permission to operate flights to and from the kingdom’s Al-Qassim region.

On being given a go-ahead to operate Al-Qassim flights, the national flag carrier issued its schedule for flights with a first flight to fly to this new station from Multan on November 18.

The PIA will use Airbus 320 for flights on this route.A spokesperson for the airline said these flights will facilitate Pakistani diaspora living in Al-Qassim. He said the PIA will operate flights to Al-Qassim from Islamabad and Multan.

On October 26, PIA Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Air Marshal Arshad Malik had met with Saudi Arabian Ambassador Nawaf Bin Saeed Al-Malki to explore areas of enhanced cooperation.

During the meeting, the CEO requested the Saudi ambassador for his support for starting flights to Al-Qassim region. He also sought permission to operate more flights to the kingdom due to increasing number of passengers intending to travel to Saudi Arabia.

Arshad Malik, in a statement, said the PIA management had been in contact with Saudi authorities to get permission to operate more flights. He expressed hope that the Saudi government will permit PIA to operate more flights to the kingdom, including the new station Al-Qassim from next month.