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At least 49 people were killed on Monday when a Bangladeshi airliner crashed in cloudy weather as it came in to land at the Nepalese capital's hill-ringed airport, officials said.

"The plane shoot off the runway while it was about to crash into the hanger and immediately caught fire", an airport official was quoted as saying by the Himalayan Times.

There is silence for a while, then a "Fire One" calls the tower, indicating that a crash has occurred and the airport fire tender has been activated.

Bombardier representatives for the commercial and business aircraft divisions said the company was saddened by the accidents, adding their thoughts were with those impacted and their families.

Nepal has suffered a number of air disasters in recent years, dealing a blow to its tourist industry.

At least 12 bodies have been recovered, according to an AP journalist who arrived at the scene soon after the crash and saw the US-Bangla Airlines plane broken into several large pieces, with dozens of firefighters and rescue workers clustered around the wreckage.

Nepal's prime minister KP Sharma Oli said eight people earlier reported to be missing were now presumed dead.

"I have no recollection after I got out of the plane, someone took me to Sinamangal hospital and from there my friends brought me to Norvic", he said.

The 67 passengers on board included 32 Bangladeshis, 33 Nepalese, a Chinese and a Maldivian.

Small aircraft often run into trouble at provincial airstrips.

"The last recorded words of the US-Bangla pilot is: "[Unintelligible] said sir, are we cleared to land?"

A recording purportedly of the conversation between the controller and pilot has been published online. "Authorities do not know why they did not land from the southern side", Chhetri said.

In 2012, a plane carrying trekkers to Mount Everest region hit a bird and crashed in Kathmandu, killing all on board.

Dhaka and Kathmandu have been connected by air since the days of East Pakistan, when DC-3 piston-engine aircraft of Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) flew the route.

The twin propeller plane, a Bombardier Dash 8, operated by US-Bangla, a Bangladeshi airline, swerved off the runway and burst in flames.

Depending on the direction of approach, pilots have to fly over high terrain before making a steep descent towards the airport, Ascenzo added. There were no reports of injuries.