Biman Bangladesh Airlines (Bengali: বিমান বাংলাদেশ এয়ারলাইন্স), commonly known as Biman (Bengali: বিমান), pronounced (bee-mah-n), is the national flag carrier of Bangladesh, having its main hub at Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport in Dhaka with its flights also operating from its secondary hubs at Shah Amanat International Airport in Chittagong as well as Osmani International Airport in Sylhet. The airline provides international passenger and cargo services to multiple destinations and has air service agreements with 42 countries. The headquarters of the airline, Balaka Bhaban, is located in Kurmitola, in the northern part of Dhaka. Annual Hajj flights; transporting tourists, migrants and non-resident Bangladeshi workers; and the activities of its subsidiaries form an integral part of the corporate business of the airline. The carrier is currently facing stiff competition from a number of domestic Bangladeshi private airlines as well as some international carriers, which offer greater flexibility targeting Bangladesh's air transport sector, which is experiencing an 8% annual growth rate, thanks to a large number of tourists and non-resident Bangladeshi travellers.
Created in February 1972, Biman enjoyed an internal monopoly in the aviation industry of Bangladesh until 1996. In the decades following its founding, the airline expanded its fleet and destinations but it was adversely affected by corruption and mismanagement. At its peak, Biman operated flights to 29 international destinations, extending from New York City in the west to Tokyo in the east. The airline was wholly owned and managed by the government of Bangladesh until 23 July 2007, when it was transformed into the country's largest public limited company by the Caretaker Government of Bangladesh. Since becoming a public limited company in 2007, the airline has reduced staff and begun to modernise its fleet. The airline had made a deal with Boeing for ten new aircraft along with options for ten more in 2008. After getting delivery of the new planes, Biman expanded its destinations and increased in-flight amenities, especially onboard Internet and WiFi; mobile telephony; and live TV streams. Biman Bangladesh Airlines is certified as safe to fly in Europe by the European Aviation Safety Agency. In addition, Biman has also successfully passed the IATA Operational Safety Audit and since then, the airline has resumed flights to some of its previous destinations in Asia and Europe.
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