The new CEO of PIA - Pakistan International Airlines (PK, Karachi Int'l) Arshad Mahmood Malik said that the airline will work on a new revival plan that will take three to five years to implement, The Nation has reported.

Speaking at an event at the Faisalabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (FCCI), Malik said that he was also working at a short-term plan which will ensure an improvement of the current reliability and financial situation.

Malik said he would use Pakistan Air Force support during the revival of the flag carrier. The airline's CEO also is PAF's Air Marshal.

The Pakistani flag carrier is currently losing some PKR3 billion rupees (USD21.5 million) per month. PIA also employs a staggering 18,000 workers with just thirty-three aircraft in its fleet, including one ATR72-500 on repair after a November 2018 ground collision. Malik further said that out of its entire fleet, only six aircraft are profitable, while as many as nine were grounded for unknown reasons despite not having any mechanical issues.

Mailk further said that it would be, in fact, much easier to launch a new airline than to try to revive PIA after years of mismanagement.

"However, I shall try to accomplish this task with national commitment and service to Pakistan", he said.

His short-term solutions would include network reorganisation with seven loss-making routes due to be slashed in the first order. While no immediate layoffs are planned, Malik said he would seek to reduce the number of the currently thirty-six labour unions active in the organisations.

Addressing the number of staff, Malik added that while the airline clearly suffered from overemployment, it would come in handy once the fleet starts growing as fewer new hires would then be required.

In terms of operations, Malik said that the upcoming 2019 Hajj season will be operationally challenging for the airline. PIA plans to wet-lease six aircraft to operate Hajj services to Jeddah and Madinah.

Mailk was appointed PIA CEO in late October 2018.