MA-60 &Y-12e : Dooming The Nepal Airlines Corporation
18 April 2016 – With the motive of occupying domestic aviation market, Nepal Airlines Corporation had signed an agreement with AVIC company of China for two Xian Ma-60’s and four Harbin Y-12e out of which two( 1 MA-60 and 1 Y-12e) was delivered to the corporation as a gift. The same aircraft are being burden to the corporation to perform well in domestic aviation field.
Photo : Nepal Airlines MA-60
Photo: Nepal Airline Y-12e
From the past six month Harbin Y-12e is grounded due to scarce of type-rated pilots, Expensive spareparts, problem in license renewal etc. Similar is the case with the MA-60. MA-60 has been grounded from past one week because of repetitive occurrence of technical problem, lack of essential manpower etc.
In reality, those two aircraft (MA-60 and Y-12e) acquired by NAC don’t meet the specifications sent by Chinese party before the delivery of those aircraft. Both aircraft have payload restriction. A 56-seater MA-60 can only carry 54 passengers while flying from Kathmandu whereas 36 passengers and 48 passengers while returning from Chandragadi and Dhangadi respectively due to temperature, air density and runway length.
The pilot, engineer and technician training costs on Y-12e and MA-60 are also much higher than that of Boeing and Airbus crew training cost. Recently, NAC was informed to spend 90,000 USD for type-rating of a pilot on Y-12e. This cost is much higher in comparison to Twinotter type-rating. Later on, Chinese party agreed to reduce the cost to 19,000 USD.
The insurance premium of MA-60 and Y-12 are also very much higher than that of A320 and B757. NAC paid 3 times higher insurance premium for MA-60 than that of Boeing and Airbus. The annual insurance premium of A320 and B757 are 1.5% of aircraft total value. The annual insurance premium of MA-60 was 4.7% of the aircraft’s total value. But later on, NAC was given 25% discount on insurance premium. It means 2 crore 26 lakh 30 thousand was given discount on annual insurance premium. Now, NAC pays NRS 6 crore 78 lakh 90 thousand as annual insurance premium for MA-60. Recent year, NAC had paid NRS 2 lakh 48 thousand as daily insurance premium.
Instead of generating profit from current Chinese aircraft, NAC is bearing more loss. Even, smooth operation of those two aircraft cannot overcome the loss completely. Nepal government is all set to bring remaining 1 MA-60 and 3 Y-12e’s due to pressure from the manufacturer. For smooth diplomatic relations of two country Nepal cannot deny to acquire those remaining aircraft. Still, final decision from cabinet is yet to come. All those remaining aircraft have already been manufactured so NAC is in huge pressure to acquire the rest of the aircraft soon.