CAA employees warn govt against privatising Islamabad airport
Different trade unions of Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) employees staged a protest against the proposed privatisation of Islamabad International Airport and threatened to shut down the entire operations if the government went ahead with the plan.
24NewsHD TV channel reported that the Joint Action Committee leaders warned the government of a strong reaction if the government did not reverse the idea of privatisation. Hundreds of workers participated in the peaceful protest.
The PTI government last month decided to outsource its major airports. In the first phase, three international airports in main cities – Islamabad, Lahore and Karachi – will be outsourced.
Around 30 percent of the total CAA staff are associated with the regulatory function — air traffic control, licensing, airworthiness, flight standard and others — which is the main source of its income [at least 70 percent]. The remaining 70 percent are hired for airport services that provide 30 percent of the CAA income.
In this scenario, the privatisation and the possible rightsizing as a consequence will mainly affect the employees associated with the airport services.
The government is of the view that there is an immense potential for airport-related commercial activities which can be exploited by bringing knowledge and experience from major international experts. Therefore, the government has already formed a Committee on Outsourcing of Major Airports.