Three years after acquiring a no-objection certificate and two years after saying it was in the final stages of securing its Air Operator's Certificate (AOC), would-be Bangladeshi start-up Fly Dhaka (Dhaka) is beating the publicity drums again, with CEO Molla Fazle Akbar telling local outlets that he wants to start ops by November 2024 using ATR72-600s.

"We are all set to spread wings of Fly Dhaka as a new airline by November this year," he told Dhaka's Daily Star outlet this week, although the start-up is still yet to secure its AOC. However, via a statement, Fly Dhaka said it is "actively addressing various pertinent matters related to the acquisition of the AOC." The airline has also started advertising for ATR Captains, First Officers, LAMEs, and other roles.

The initial plan is to operate the ATR/s on domestic sectors before acquiring Boeing and Airbus aircraft for "global operations." Bangladeshi aviation regulations restrict start-ups to domestic sectors only for two years before they can apply to expand into international ops. "Our aim is not only to establish a robust presence in the domestic market but also to extend our reach to the global arena," this week's statement reads. "Towards this end, negotiations with a giant Asian airline are already underway."

ch-aviation has contacted Fly Dhaka for further information.

Two years ago, ch-aviation reported that Fly Dhaka had signed a consultancy agreement with AirAsia Consulting, a unit of the AirAsia Aviation Group, ahead of it intending to launch as a low-cost carrier with a fleet of A320 family aircraft.

Anisul Islam Mahmud, a UK-educated barrister, politician, and current member for the Chittagong-5 district, owns Fly Dhaka. Mahmud also serves as the start-up's managing director. The CEO is a retired lieutenant general with a PhD from an undisclosed university. "Under such a dynamic management Fly Dhaka will progress rapidly and will hold the leadership in Bangladesh aviation industry," the airline's website says.

If it secures its AOC and launches, Fly Dhaka will join Air Astra, Biman Bangladesh Airlines, NovoAir, and US-Bangla Airlines, as Bangladesh-based scheduled carriers. The Daily Star notes that eight Bangladeshi carriers have gone out of business in the past 25 years.