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Nepal needs to wait until November to know fate

It seems Nepal has to wait till November to get cleared from operational restrictions of its aircrafts within the European Union (EU).

Aviation Safety Committee meeting held on March 25-27 in Brussels, Belgium will reassess the European Commission’s on-site inspections report – in the first week of February – Nepal’s civil aviation sector and decide on whether Nepal’s restriction be lifted or not. The decision will be however taken in November meeting.

The European Commission on December 5, 2013 had for the first time banned Nepali aircraft to fly to European Union sky alleging bad air safety record.

If the Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal (CAAN) addresses sir safety issue – that the European Union has long been asking for – the November meeting is expected to lift the bank on Nepali aircraft.

Improvement in weaknesses like operation, air operators certification and pilot licensing will help lift bank.

Though, CAAN claimed that Nepal Airlines crash on February 16 – in which 18 passengers and crew members were killed – was the key reason behind the EC’s move not to consider Nepal’s agenda for discussion, the aviation sector regulator has been very slow in implementation of European Commission’s recommendations to improve sir safety.

Nepali tourism sector has already started feeling the heat of ban and there is no option to reform aviation sector.