The Pakistani Government has extended the window that Air Sial (SIF, Karachi Int'l) has to secure its Air Operator's Certificate (AOC) and launch operations and has also waived a penalty for the start-up's failure to launch within two years of obtaining its Regular Public Transport (RPT) licence, The Business Recorder has reported.

Air Sial was granted its RPT in 2017 and had, by law, two years to secure the AOC and launch. However, in September 2019, the start-up applied for an extension to allow it enough time to take delivery of the first of three A320-200s on a dry-lease from AerCap. The first is provisionally scheduled to arrive in Pakistan in April this year.

The government has since approved the request and waived the penalty, amounting to 10% of the airline's deposit.

According to AerCap's press release, Air Sial will receive three second-hand A320-200s by the end of the first half of 2020. Although the carrier's Board Chairman Fazal Jillani announced the signing of the lease agreement in August 2019, the lessor only confirmed it on December 30.

The start-up is owned by the Sialkot Chamber of Commerce and Industries and will operate out of Sialkot in cooperation with local businesses. No further details have so far been revealed.