Friday, December 28, 2018

Air India Chairman asks staff to do everything to ensure national carrier is afloat

National carrier Air India, surviving on government largesse for long, must generate revenue in every “possible manner” if it has to stay afloat in a fiercely competitive market, chairman and managing director Pradeep Singh Kharola has said. In a message to over 20,000 employees in the latest edition of the airline’s monthly in-house magazine, he also called for optimal utilization of resources amid “critical” fiscal situation.
“We all have to tighten our belt, adopt strong fiscal discipline and streamline our functioning without compromising on our operational efficiency. At the same time, we need to generate revenue in every possible manner to stay afloat,” Kharola said.

He said the path towards turnaround becomes more “difficult” with the market throwing fresh challenges arising from rising fuel costs, a volatile currency and an overall increase in operational cost besides fierce competition which doesn’t allow airlines to increase fares.
While the average jet fuel prices increased around 35 percent during April-November this year, the rupee fell 7.8 percent against the dollar during this period, according to recent report by rating agency Icra. This has resulted in an increase in the cost per available seat kms, not buttressed by an increase in yields, the report added. On top of it, the excess capacity has forced airlines to keep fares low amid cut-throat competition.
28/12/18 PTI/Indian Express
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