“The government is fully committed to the reform and restructure of all ailing state enterprises, including PIA,”

–An official statement from the Prime Minister’s Office after giving his consent

to privatise 26% shares of the national flag carrier – September 13, 2013.

The PML-N government committed to privatising PIA and other loss-incurring state entities after being granted a staggered IMF loan of $ 6.7 billion in September 2013. PIA had losses over Rs 120 billion in the past ten years. Originally, the plan was supported by top management but rejected by the PIA union. With overstaffing a major problem, the union rightly feared that staff cuts would be the first consideration of any prospective buyer. Two years have passed, and no headway has been made in the attempt to privatise PIA. With protests in PIA offices all over the country, it still remains to be seen how the government will end this saga.