Vistara and AirAsia will soon be able to fly abroad as all key ministries have supported abolition of the five-year 20-aircraft rule that airlines had to meet before commencing international operations.
The aviation ministry had sought response from ministries such as finance, home, external affairs and commerce on the proposed new civil aviation policy, before sending it to the Union Cabinet for approval. Abolition of the 5/20 rule was one of the key proposals in it.
“Comments from ministries are in support of the abolition of 5/20. The Cabinet note, which has the approval of both ministers (Cabinet Minister Ashok Gajapati Raju and junior Minister Mahesh Sharma), is likely to be sent by the end of this week,” said a senior civil aviation ministry official, who did not want to be named.
According to the proposed rules, airlines must allocate 20 aircraft or 20% of their total fleet of aircraft, whichever is higher, to the domestic sector if they wish to fly overseas, ET had reported first on March 9, 2016.
The abolition of the minimum time requirement will mean Vistara and AirAsia India, which were launched in 2015 and 2014, respectively, will not have to wait five years for flying abroad, as long as they have a fleet strength of 20. At present the airlines, both part-owned by the Tata Group, have nine and six aircraft, respectively.
Government officials in the know also said the external affairs ministry has approved the aviation ministry’s proposal to conduct auction of bilateral traffic rights. The support from the external affairs ministry on auctioning the bilateral is crucial, as it HAD created a rift between both the aviation ministers as well as officials of the aviation ministry.
Government officials in the know said minister Raju and a few senior ministry officials wanted auctioning of bilateral rights to bring in transparency in the system of allocation of bilateral rights, as allocation of bilateral rights has created a lot of controversy in the past. Bud Dupree Womens JerseyShare This