Two Pakistani newspapers ran a story with the headline that German carrier Lufthansa is planning to resume weekly passenger flights to Pakistan after a 13-year absence. This was based on a quote from Fareena Mazhar who is secretary Board of Investment. Her comment was based on the statement by German Ambassador Bernhard Stephan Schlagheck who said that ” a delegation of German businessmen is set to visit Pakistan in the following week to explore investment opportunities”. And it was revealed that “Lufthansa is also a part of the delegation and is keen on starting operations in Pakistan,”. There is no official confirmation about the resumption of flights as yet.
So based on the information available, it is fair to say that Lufthansa is exploring the opportunities. Because this is not the first time that such rumors have resurfaced in the market. Also, Lufthansa restarted flights to Pakistan in 2007 only to drop the idea within months. Historically Lufthansa operated 3 flights to Karachi from Frankfurt that were discontinued and resumed on October 28, 2007. But within one year Lufthansa stopped Pakistan flights from 25th October 2008 citing some unspecified commercial reasons. It stopped Karachi Frankfurt flights earlier in 2008. Lufthansa operated Lahore to Frankfurt flights 3 times a week using an Airbus A300-600.
Then the same rumour resurfaced in October 2020 but nothing materialised. Let’s see what comes out of this delegation visit. On top of that, the EASA ban is a huge opportunity handed over to European carriers that are taking full advantage of it.