12:00 AM, April 07, 2014 / LAST MODIFIED: 01:53 AM, March 08, 2015

Biman resumes Frankfurt flight after 8 years

Biman resumes Frankfurt flight after 8 years

Shariful Islam, back from Frankfurt, Germany

Biman Bangladesh Airlines resumed operations on its Frankfurt route last week after a gap of 8 years, to cater to the growing business needs between the two countries and to woo European tourists coming to Southeast Asia.
Expatriates and the Bangladesh business community welcomed the move, but said the airline would have to ensure timely departures and maintain services to attract travellers, particularly foreign tourists.  
“It's a pleasure to even think that Biman is coming to Frankfurt,” said Anowarul Kabir, a Bangladesh-born German businessman.
Biman will operate two flights a week -- Fridays and Saturdays -- to the new destination via Rome with the brand new Boeing 777-300 ER with 419 seats.
Frankfurt is the 19th overseas destination for the national carrier.
Biman suspended its Frankfurt route in 2006 after 19 years of service due to a shortage of aircraft. However, analysts had said the route was closed for continued losses.
On business prospects on the route, Kabir, who runs a textiles business, said passengers' response to Biman would depend on its marketing and other services in the highly competitive airlines business.
The prospect of carrying cargo to Bangladesh from Frankfurt is good, but to attract European tourists visiting Nepal, Myanmar, Thailand and Malaysia, the facilities at Shahjalal International Airport need to be improved, he added.
Manfred Schleiffer, sales manager of Air Logistics, Biman's cargo handling agent in Germany, said they are targeting eight to ten tonnes of cargo a flight from Frankfurt.
Bangladesh mainly imports machinery, spare parts, chemicals, automobile parts and pharmaceuticals from Germany.
Jamal Uddin Ahmed, chairman of the Biman board, hopes the carrier would be successful on the route by maintaining services, as a lot of tourists visiting Nepal, Myanmar and Thailand would travel by Biman.
Biman's direct connectivity with Germany would open a new window of opportunities for trade, tourism and cultural exchanges between the two countries, he added.


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