Tajikistan aviation is crumbling


ISLAMABAD, Pakistan – The Civil Aviation industry of Tajikistan is crumbling as its national carrier, “Tajik Air,” has only two operational aircrafts, while private company Somon Air has nine operational aircrafts to connect this landlocked country with the rest of the world.

Tajik Air operates only with two aircrafts while Lahore-Dushanbe flight operations closed down.

Tajikistan has closed down its flight operations to Lahore, Pakistan, those which were started on May 6, 2016. This route was projected as a diplomatic breakthrough between Islamabad and Dushanbe, and Prime Minister of Pakistan, Mian Nawaz Sharif, during his visit to Dushanbe in May mentioned air linkage between Lahore-Dushanbe as a great diplomatic development. However, travel experts believed in May that the inception of Lahore-Dushanbe flight operations was just a political decision and feared closure of the flights in the coming months. Now, fears of travel experts have been justified by the decision of private firm Somon Air to drop Lahore as its destination from its booking system.

According to information provided by Tajik Transport Minister Sherali Ganjalzoda during a press conference that was held on August 1, Tajikistan has sought financial investments for its civil aviation industry.

Meanwhile, travel and tourism experts believe that the civil aviation industry is crumbling in Tajikistan, and currently flights are being operated to only 12 destinations and a total number of flights of 21 per week.

Travel experts claim that Tajikistan has not invested in its civil aviation industry since its independence from the former Soviet Union despite being a landlocked country. Its runways were constructed during the Soviet era, and even its biggest and most important airport of Dushanbe was last reconstructed back in 2005.

According to travel experts, the civil aviation industry of Tajikistan needs large financial investments for purchasing modern aircraft and reconstruction of landing strips and airport buildings, but international companies are not showing their interest to invest in Tajikistan for several reasons, including complicated laws and rules for international investments.

According to official data, Somon Air now has nine operational aircraft, while Tajik Air has only two operational aircraft and another one is under repair.

Tajik Air is the State Unitary Aviation Enterprise known as Tajikistan Airlines and is the national airline of Tajikistan, established in 1923 as a division of Aeroflot in Tajikistan.

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