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Afghan airline on brink of collapse

30 March 2007

Afghanistan’s national airline could be days from collapse due to corruption, mismanagement and a crippling aircraft leasing arrangement that has drowned the struggling carrier in debt.

The government is scrambling to court investors to privatize up to 75 percent of state-owned Ariana Afghan Airlines, and is tallying its assets in case the company is liquidated, an Associated Press investigation has learned.

The collapse of the 52-year old airline, which survived the Taliban regime despite international sanctions, would be a potent symbol of failure by the administration of President Hamid Karzai and would reinforce growing perceptions of corruption and incompetence.

source: BusinessWeek

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