Pakistani pilots’ licenses to be revoked if found illegal: Official hinh anh 1A foreign pilot working in a cockpit (Photo: VietnamPlus)

Hanoi (VNA) – Licenses of Pakistani pilots who are working in Vietnam will be revoked if they are found illegal, General Director of the Civil Aviation Administration of Vietnam (CAAV) Dinh Viet Thang has affirmed.

Thang said that the CAAV has reviewed and temporarily suspended 27 Pakistani pilots working at Vietnamese airlines following an internationally-shocking fake pilot license scandal in the South Asian country.

“All of those pilots are of the Pakistani nationality and licensed in the country. They are working at several airlines in Vietnam,” Thang said, adding that there had been no case of a pilot obtaining a license from Pakistan as a citizen of another country.

The CAAV is also reviewing all foreign pilots working for local airlines and will report the results to the Ministry of Transport before July 31, 2020.

“The review will be applied on all foreign pilots who are working in Vietnam. This is a regular work to ensure the highest flight safety,” stated Thang. “Vietnam is appreciated in the region for ensuring flight safety when it is granted with Category 1 safety oversight certificate (CAT 1) by the US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), and is among the few countries in the region maintaining this certificate.”

He acknowledged that the use of foreign pilots is popular in the world. The important thing is to closely monitor these pilots to ensure absolute safety in the aviation sector.

Affirming that none of the Pakistani pilots are involved in a flight incident or flight safety threat while flying for Vietnamese airlines, Thang said the CAAV has assessed they are good pilots, but still asked for the temporary suspension of these pilots cautiously.

“Currently, the Civil Aviation Administration of Vietnam is waiting for the results of a review from the Pakistani aviation authorities to determine whether those pilots have used a fake license or not,” Thang said, adding that cases of legal licenses would be allow to resume their work.

According to Pakistani media, the country’s aviation authorities suspected as many as 262 out of their 860 pilots had used ‘fake’ licenses. These pilots were alleged to hire others to take exams for them in order to get the license, an accusation that followed a probe into last month’s crash that killed 97 people in Karachi.

There are reportedly about a thousand of foreign pilots working for domestic airlines including Vietnam Airlines, Vasco, Vietjet Air, Jetstar Pacific, and Bamboo Airways.

Regarding the process of recruiting foreign pilots to work, Thang said pilots will obtain license from the countries where they are trained. When a foreign pilot wants to work in Vietnam, he/she must transfer that license into a Vietnam’s recognised license, which requires him/her to go through the testing process of the CAAV.

Specifically, when receiving a dossier on licensing for a foreign pilot, the CAAV will carefully check information related to age, health conditions, qualifications, and total flight hours. The agency will also contact the pilot’s original licensing authority to ensure that the requested license is issued by an International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) member. Then, a theory test will be organised, and those passing the test will take part in a practical test in a simulation cockpit. Completing all these steps, the foreign pilots will be licensed in Vietnam.

The pilot licensing and certification procedures for foreign pilots are in compliance with the Vietnam Aviation Safety Regulations, Thang affirmed./.


Statistics of the Civil Aviation Administration of Vietnam show that 1,223 foreign pilots are working in Vietnam, with Vietnam Airlines employing 309, Jetstar Pacific 145, Vietjet Air 622, and Bamboo Airways 147. Among the 27 licensed Pakistani pilots, Vietnam Airlines has employed six, Vietjet Air 17 and Jetstar Pacific four. However, 15 of them have either completed the labour contract or returned to their home country due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The remaining 12 pilots are working for both Vietjet Air and Jetstar Pacific, with the former employing 11.