Fly Dhaka, a Bangladeshi start-up, has applied for a no-objection certificate (NOC) from the Civil Aviation Authority of Bangladesh (CAAB) as it plans to launch operations with a fleet of ATR72-600s.
Another new private airline of the country, Air Astra has also officially submitted its NOC application to the CAAB on September 21.
Fly Dhaka is backed by a number of businesspeople and is entirely privately owned. Among the backers is Anisul Islam Mahmud, the former minister of finance and environment of Bangladesh. He told the Business Post, a business publication in Bangladesh, that the start-up would only reveal details about its proposed business model once it has completed certification.
Air Astra plans to commence operations in early 2022, also using ATR72-600s.
Imran Asif, chief executive officer of Air Astra, today told that they submitted the application to CAAB on September 21.
“The process including pre-aircraft acquisition task and preparation of regulatory-compliance documentation is underway, in the meantime,” he added.
The airline is planning to operate flights on all seven divisional domestic routes.
“If we can collect at least four aircraft by January, we will be able to operate flights to all domestic destinations,” Air Astra CEO Asif said.
The airline company will get permission to operate flights on international routes after operating flights on domestic routes for at least one year.
Air Astra, incorporated as Astra Airlines Limited revealed its new livery illustrated on the airline’s planned initial fleet of ATR 72-600 aircraft early this month.
If both airlines succeed in entering the market, they will double the number of active privately-owned carriers in Bangladesh. Currently, the pool comprises exclusively NovoAir and US-Bangla Airlines, alongside state-owned Biman Bangladesh Airlines. Privately-owned Regent Airways remains a functioning company but suspended all operations during the COVID-19 pandemic.