Regent Airways (RGE, Dhaka) CEO Imran Asif has announced that the airline plans to take delivery of four B737-800s later this year, local media have reported.

Financial issues since 2018 forced it to let go of two aircraft from its all-leased fleet during 2019, while two of its remaining B737-800s are in maintenance. But Asif vowed at a press conference in Dhaka on January 8 to bounce back by completing the repairs, adding four more aircraft of the type, and improving service quality.

Owned by the Bangladeshi conglomerate Habib Group, the carrier operates two domestic and seven international routes, according to the ch-aviation capacities module. But with the additional aircraft, it plans to launch routes to Abu Dhabi Int'l, Chennai, and Guangzhou this year and increase frequencies on its existing routes, Asif said.

“We are currently going through a temporary distressing situation,” the chief executive admitted to reporters, as quoted by The Daily Star newspaper.

Fearing it might be shut down, state-run Biman Bangladesh Airlines (BG, Dhaka) recently sent a letter to its offices abroad telling them not to take a Flight Interruption Manifest (FIM) from Regent, a move Asif branded as inappropriate.

“We pay FIM bills through the IATA Clearing House. We never delay such payments. It's an unfortunate matter that after Biman’s letter other airlines have stopped taking FIMs from us,” he said. “If a business isn’t profitable for a provisional period, it doesn’t mean it is going to be closed. Businesses face frequent ups and downs and we will definitely overcome this financial situation as we are getting support from our parent company, which is a big corporation.”