IFC to help Druk Air improve services
New Delhi, February 19, 2009: International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the World Bank Group, will work with state-owned airline, Drukair, to review the airline’s operations to increase efficiencies and provide better services to passengers at affordable cost.
The agreement with Drukair and its parent company, Druk Holding and Investments, marks IFC’s first infrastructure advisory project in Bhutan, IFC said in a statement. IFC will evaluate the airline’s finances and operations and make recommendations that can help Drukair operate at its full potential, including exploring the possibility of attracting private investors.
The natural limitations of its international airport at Paro limit take-off and landing options to daylight hours and good weather conditions. As a result, aircraft spend significant time on the ground. Not surprisingly, Drukair is the only airline that operates in Bhutan, despite bilateral agreements with neighboring countries like Nepal, Thailand, and India.
“With IFC’s global expertise, we will be able to benchmark Drukair against international best practices,” said Karma Yonten, CEO of Druk Holding and Investments. “We also hope to use IFC’s study and its recommendations to create the right environment for promoting international connectivity.”
Paolo M. Martelli, IFC Director for South Asia, added: “Through this first infrastructure advisory project for IFC in Bhutan, we hope to pave the way for partnering with the country in its objectives of creating jobs and boosting overall economic growth.”