RAWALPINDI: The Pakistan International Airline (PIA) has acquired Airbus A320 flight simulator that will be used for training of more than 400 pilots, proficiency checks and will reduce the cost of training of pilots.

According to sources, a simple ceremony of acquiring the flight simulator was held in Islamabad on Monday which was attended by the United Kingdom’s ambassador in Pakistan, regional director of L3 company and secretary aviation.

The PIA had signed an agreement with L-3 UK Ltd to provide an A320 flight simulator for pilots’ training. Currently the national flag carrier operates 11 Airbus A 320 aircraft, while that number of A320 aircraft is expected to increase to 15 by April 2022.

The usage of a simulator for Pakistani airline pilots would result in safer training and cost savings for the operators, as the airlines had to spend a significant amount of money to train their pilots overseas.

When a pilot was sent abroad for training, a representative from the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) accompanied him, which cost the airline.

However, after the acquisition of a simulator by the airline, it will be able to save a large amount of money.

The multimillion-dollar of A320 simulator will also assist the PIA in imparting training to pilots from other countries. It is most likely to be installed at PIA’s training centre Jinnah International Airport.

The purchase of a simulator, according to sources, will be a landmark achievement for the Pakistan Civil Aviation Authority (PCAA).

A senior aviation official of aviation said that flight simulators were so accurate that a student pilot can learn to fly from scratch in the virtual world. It makes the training of pilots efficient and affordable and important to train student pilots.

He said that training pilots is costly and time consuming, so a simulator would be an efficient and affordable solution to the looming pilot shortage and training.

Published in Dawn, December 18th, 2021

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