Posts Tagged ‘India’


[Times of India] NEW DELHI: There is no end to uncertainty in sight for passengers scheduled to fly Air India’s international flights.

The airline has sent doctors to some homes of the 160 pilots who have reported sick.  Photo: Wikipedia

The airline has sent doctors to some homes of the 160 pilots who have reported sick. Photo: Wikipedia

With aviation minister Ajit Singh terming the strike of erstwhile AI pilots ‘illegal’ and saying appropriate action would be taken, the management on Tuesday sacked 10 agitating pilots and derecognized Nationalist Congress Party-backed union, Indian Pilots Guild (IPG).

The airline has asked the agitating pilots to report to work by Tuesday evening. It also started sending doctors to the homes of some of the 160 pilots who have reported sick and are abstaining from flying since Monday night. Sources say that the number of layoffs could rise as the government is in no mood to buckle under IPG’s pressure.

ut the IPG, which is led by Maharashtra NCP MLA Jitendra Ahwad, is unrelenting. “The derecognition of IPG is undemocratic and just shows that the management is biased against erstwhile AI. Pilots of erstwhile Indian Airlines have gone on several strikes in the recent past but was their union, Indian Commercial Pilots Association, ever derecognized?” Ahwad, who holds a commercial pilots’ licence but is not a……

Read the full story at the Times of India…. 


, TNN
May 8, 2012



[FT.com] Aditya Ghosh, the youthful president of IndiGo, says there is no big secret behind the success of India’s only profitable airline in an infamously difficult aviation market.

IndiGo President Aditya Ghosh says “We don’t try to do anything fancy, we don’t try to bend the wind, we just stick to our business model”

IndiGo President Aditya Ghosh says “We don’t try to do anything fancy, we don’t try to bend the wind, we just stick to our business model”. Photo: Wikipedia

When asked how the no-frills carrier manages to make money while its rivals bleed red ink thanks to extortionate taxes, high fuel prices and fierce price competition, Mr Ghosh simply says:

“We don’t try to do anything fancy, we don’t try to bend the wind, we just stick to our business model,” the 36-year-old executive says from his cramped office at company headquarters in the New Delhi suburb of Gurgaon. “We fly our planes on time; the flying experience is neat; and our fares are consistently lower than our competitors.”

Analysts tend to agree with his assessment. They say that in contrast to Kingfisher Airlines, the debt-laden carrier struggling to avoid bankruptcy, privately held IndiGo has followed the strategy of Southwest Airlines in the US and Europe’s Ryanair: offer only low-cost fares connecting busy destinations using just one type of plane.

“In terms of operations IndiGo is by far the best airline in India,” says Sharan Lillaney, aviation analyst at Angel Broking. “It’s definitely on track to become the Indian Southwest but it will have to prove itself over time.”

The president of the five-year-old carrier, owned by Rahul Bhatia, an Indian billionaire, and Rakesh Gangwal, the US Airways former chief executive, says…..

Read the full story at FT.com


By James Fontanella-Khan
New Delhi – 6th May 2012



[Business StandardJapan Airlines (JAL) will become the first carrier to bring a Boeing 787 Dreamliner to India when it lands the aircraft in New Delhi from Tokyo tomorrow.

The first Dreamliner service will be launched in India from tomorrow

The first Dreamliner service will be launched in India from tomorrow: Photo - Aviationnews.eu

“With the launch of the Dreamliner, India will become the second country in JAL’s operations to get this special high-end aircraft. This reiterates our commitment to the Indian market. The first Dreamliner service will be launched in India from tomorrow,” said country manager Yasushi Isomura.

Japan Airlines runs Boeing 777 service five days a week, on Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Sunday. The Dreamliners will operate for four days, excluding Thursday, when the airline will operate Boeing 777.

With the operations of the Dreamliners, the airline will bring down its capacity on offer by 25 per cent. A Dreamliner has 186 seats compared to 215 in a Boeing 777. Delhi is the second international destination for JAL where it has launched a Boeing 787. Earlier this month, it launched its first Dreamliner service to Boston in the US. Isomura said India was one of the most profitable……

Rad the full story at India’s Business Standard…..


BS Reporter / New Delhi May 01, 2012, 00:31 IST



[India Today] A Pakistan International Airlines flight on Friday made an emergency landing at the Karachi airport after a passenger allegedly threatened to hijack the aircraft.

PIA flight PK-586, which was flying from Karachi to Bahawalpur in Punjab province

PIA flight PK-586, which was flying from Karachi to Bahawalpur in Punjab province

PIA flight PK-586, which was flying from Karachi to Bahawalpur in Punjab province, turned back to the port city after an air hostess alerted the captain about the passenger’s threat, TV news channels reported.

The passenger who made the alleged threat was arrested by commandos of the Airport Security Force at the Jinnah International Airport.

The aircraft was searched by security forces after being evacuated.

Following his arrest, the passenger claimed he had made the alleged threat after a quarrel with the air hostess and that he had no intention of hijacking the aircraft.

The number of passengers on the flight could not immediately be ascertained.

Pakistan’s aviation industry has been hit by a string of problems in recent years.

A total of 127 people were killed when a Boeing 737 of the private Bhoja Air crashed near Islamabad on April 20.

This was the second major air disaster in the vicinity of the Pakistani capital since July 28, 2010, when an Air Blue airliner slammed into……

Read the full story at  INDIA TODAY…..


PTI Karachi,
April 27, 2012



[Gulf News] Dubai All UAE flights to New Delhi are in for a steep fare hike following a 346 per cent increase in airport charges and a user development fee (UDF) that will be levied on passengers by the Indian capital’s airport regulator, Airports Economic Regulatory Authority of India starting May 15.

"Taxation in India is over the top. Already, 50-56 per cent of airline costs go into taxation

Indian airline official "Taxation in India is over the top. Already, 50-56 per cent of airline costs go into taxation"

The approximate increase in ticket prices, according to the country’s airport operator, is estimated to be around Rs290 (Dh20) in the domestic sector and Rs580 in the international sector.

The current economy return fares from Dubai to Delhi range from Dh1,500 to Dh2,000 depending on the airline. An industry expert told Gulf News last night that the increase could result in fares between the UAE and Delhi rising by as much as 15 per cent. Tour operators in Dubai and Sharjah expect fares to go up as early as next month.

An Emirates spokesperson told Gulf News: “Emirates is concerned by the proposed increase in airport changes at Delhi airport. We are currently in discussions with the relevant authority and have no further comment at this time.”….

Read the full story at Gulf News….


By Sharmila Dhal Senior Reporter, XPRESS
and Shweta Jain Senior Reporter
Published: April 27, 2012



Are the fortunes of the heavily troubled Indian aviation industry set to take a turn for the better?

Kingfisher has become the smallest airline in India. Reuters

Kingfisher has become the smallest airline in India. Reuters

Quite possibly, says a report in Business Standard. A reduction in over-capacity caused by significant flight cancellations by crisis-struck Kingfisher Airlines have led to improved yields for other local carriers. The trend looks likely to continue if oil prices don’t spiral out of control.

“The finances of airlines would improve in 2012-13 on the back of better pricing of tickets due to rationalisation of capacity. Capacity addition would also be moderate and the airlines would make money,” Kapil Kaul, chief executive officer (South Asia), Centre for Asia Pacific Aviation (CAPA), told the newspaper.

Last month, a report by Kotak Institutional Equities also noted that yields (revenues per passenger per kilometre) had stayed strong in the January-March quarter because of constantly reducing capacity by Kingfisher.

Still, an improving fourth-quarter won’t make up for all the pain of the past. CAPA expects airlines (including Air India) to post a cumulative loss of $2.5 billion for 2011-2012.

Don’t expect any miracles in fourth-quarter earnings either because operating costs for airlines continued to climb.Business Standard points out that while domestic fares for the March-ending quarter climbed 15-18 percent from the previous quarter, it was offset by a 15 percent increase in jet fuel — the largest expense item for airlines – and a 11 percent depreciation in the rupee…..

Read the full story at Firstpost Business….


By FP Editors 
Apr 20, 2012



DUBAI: Spicejet has been approached by several Gulf-based and Southeast Asian airlines but will not jump into negotiations before the government reaches a crucial decision on foreign investment, its chief executive said on Wednesday. 

"We have been approached by several Gulf and Southeast Asian airlines, all on a tentative basis,"

"We have been approached by several Gulf and Southeast Asian airlines, all on a tentative basis,"

“We have been approached by several Gulf and Southeast Asian airlines, all on a tentative basis,” Neil Mills, the loss-making budget carrier’s chief executive, told Reuters.

India allows up to 49 percent foreign investment in Indian carriers but bars foreign carriers from picking up stakes. But with most carriers suffering losses, the government is now mulling allowing foreign airlines to invest directly.

India’s cabinet is expected to make a decision on Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) rules this week.

“There is nothing more serious than tentative talks to see if we are interested. We have said that we are interested in exploring any option for us that makes business sense but until a decision has been taken on FDI there is no point in taking it further,” Mills said in a telephone interview.

“Once we get regulatory confirmation in place then we can see whether it makes sense to look at alternative funding options. We are just talking about a concept until the law is amended.”

He declined to name any of the airlines involved. Dubai’s Emirates airline said earlier this week it is studying new opportunities to buy foreign carriers if they fit the Gulf emirate’s strategy, adding that it is interested in an investment in India if carried out at the right price.

India’s embattled carriers have long lobbied for looser foreign ownership rules.

Indian airlines are laden with $20 billion in debt and probably lost $2.5 billion in the fiscal year that ended in March, according to Centre for Asia Pacific Aviation, a consultancy.

Kingfisher, India’s second largest carrier by market share, is urgently seeking funds as it battles to stay afloat.

Despite the turmoil, industry analysts say India represents a tempting prize for foreign airlines seeking access to its market of 1.3 billion people.

Read the full story at The Economic Times (Reuters)….


Thursday 19 APR, 2012
REUTERS



Dubai’s Emirates Airline is in talks to increase its bilateral rights with India as it looks grow its network of routes across the subcontinent, a senior executive at the carrier said.

Emirates will look at any opportunity that makes sense commercially

Emirates will look at any opportunity that makes sense commercially

The world’s largest airline by traffic, which has already said it would be open to investments in India, said it wants to increase its frequency on existing routes, but denied any plans to invest in struggling Kingfisher Airlines.

“Emirates will look at any opportunity that makes sense commercially. We are optimistic of FDI being allowed in the sector,” Majid Al Mualla, Emirates’ senior vice president for commercial operations, Indian Ocean, told The Times of India.

“We are witnessing a growth of 18 percent in the very important Indian market and our 185 weekly flights see load factors of over 80 percent. There is a need to increase capacity as we are fully utilising the current rights given to us and we are waiting for some good news soon,” he added.

The Indian subcontinent generates about 11-12 percent of Emirates’ total revenue, the report said….

Read the original story at Arabian Supply Chain….


by ASC Staff
Apr 15, 2012



The Indian government has approved a debt restructuring plan to save Air India, the country’s national airline.

Civil Aviation Minister Ajit Singh said 30bn rupees would be injected into the airline by 2020.

Civil Aviation Minister Ajit Singh said 30bn rupees would be injected into the airline by 2020.

Civil Aviation Minister Ajit Singh said 30bn rupees ($5.9bn; £3.7bn) would be injected into the airline by 2020.

But there will be many checks and targets that the company will need to achieve, the minister said. Mr Singh said the restructuring was necessary as the government could not continue to spend public money on the loss-making airline.

Mr Singh told reporters after a meeting of the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs that around 7.4bn rupees of Air India’s assets would be converted into non-convertible debentures.

The debt-ridden airline has outstanding loans and dues of 67.5bn rupees.

In February, three state-owned oil firms – Indian oil, Bharat Petroleum and Hindustan Petroleum – halted supplies to the airline for almost four hours for non-payment of dues. Last year too, oil firms had put the airline on a cash-and-carry deal, which meant that Air India had to pay every time it refuelled its planes, rather than get a 90-day grace period usually given to make payments.

The firms restored the credit limit on assurances from the government that payments would be made on time….

Read the full BBC story here….


BBC News
12 April 2012



After a delay of nearly four months, many employees of the embattled Indian airline Kingfisher have been paid.

Chairman Vijay Mallya his employees that ewould pay the missing salaries

Chairman of the crisis-hit carrier, Vijay Mallya, admitted the salaries had been “seriously overdue”, but that the problem had arisen in the first place because the Indian tax authorities had frozen the company’s accounts.

Airline staff had previously written an open letter to Mallya, in it they said that they would stop reporting for duty if the situation wasn’t resolved soon. They also said that they could not give thier full attention to their work during this time due to the financial stress, and that this may lead to it being unsafe for passengers using KingFisher.

Kingfisher has been in financial trouble for some time. At one stage it was India’s largest airline by passenger numbers, but is now weathering money troubles, losing on average $1m (£628,000) per day….

Watch the Video Story at BBC News here….


BBC News, 10th April 2012
Adrienne Murray reporting from Mumbai