KATHMANDU, Nepal - While the Ministry of Finance has begun repaying interest on the loans for the planes, a batch of Chinese aircraft that Nepal had imported in the hopes of flying in underserved sectors and generating revenue for the struggling Nepal Airlines Corporation have been sitting on the ground for more than two years and rusting.
The jinxed planes have been, in the words of the local slang, "something caught in its throat" (cannot spit or swallow) for the national flag carrier, which struggles to balance its finances even during the best of circumstances.
The first Chinese aircraft, which arrived in 2014, caused Nepal Airlines to incur risky losses since they were more expensive to run than the revenue they generated. After reaching their breaking point, the corporation's board decided to put them in deep storage in July 2020.
Three 17-seater Y12e aircraft and two 56-seater MA60 aircraft, which make up the five condemned aircraft, are situated in a secluded parking area on the eastern side of Kathmandu's Tribhuvan International Airport. Another one that crashed and is unflyable was near Nepalgunj.
The press collected photos of the aircraft, revealing that the Y12e's tail section is covered in moss. The metal surfaces and parts of the airplane are starting to rust.