Govt to offer golden handshake to one-third PIA employees

PIA employees

In order to keep the national airline afloat, the Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) has approved a Voluntary Separation Scheme (VSS) to lay off a maximum of 7,500 Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) employees.

Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) are eyeing on allocation of Rs 12.871 billion in order to award golden handshake to at least 3,500 staff and at most 7,500 employees through Voluntary Separation Scheme (VSS).

The airline currently has 15,000 employees. The ECC says a minimum of 3,500 employees must be let go. The most employees the airline can let go is 7,500.

If the airline decides to let 7,500 employees go, it will cost between Rs 12 billion and Rs 13 billion but will save Rs 4 billion a year.

After concluding the self-retirement structure for its employees, Pakistan International Airlines Corporation Limited and the Aviation Division had forwarded the scheme to ECC for endorsement.

The decision was made in last ECC session which was chaired by Prime Minister Advisor on Finance and Revenue, Dr. Abdul Hafeez Sheikh.

After a detailed discussion on this matter, the committee approved the summary in principle but did not endorse the asked allocation amount. However, the company has asked the Aviation Division to make an offer to PIA staff to determine how many of the employees are willing to take this golden handshake offer. The allocation of funds will be decided accordingly.

Apart from that, ECC also approved four different Technical Supplementary Grants for the Interior Ministry and Ministry of Defence for numerous ventures.

Upon the request of Ministry of Defence, the ECC approves a hefty amount of Rs. 26.9 billion for the second phase of fencing along the Pakistan-Iran border, according to sources.

ECC also approves Rs. 5 billion for Internal Security Duty Allowance along with Rs. 6.2 billion in order to meet the recruiting cost of Special Security Division (North) Pakistan Army.

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