Friday, December 07, 2018

Centre is planning more financial assistance for Air India: Pradeep Kharola, CMD

Debt-laden Air India is gearing up for another round of “financial assistance” from the government as Centre warms up to revive the state carrier, Moneycontrol has learnt.

In an exclusive conversation with Moneycontrol, Pradeep Kharola, chairman and managing director, Air India, said that the government has initiated discussions regarding the same.

“They will give us some financial assistance… The quantum is being discussed as of now,” Kharola said.

Cash starved Air India has been under severe financial stress due to high air turbine fuel (ATF) prices and falling market share. The airline has been bleeding for over a decade and has received support from the government “from time to time”.

Aviation secretary RN Choubey had recently told reporters that the airline was being provided financial assistance “by way of equity and guarantee by the government from time to time”.

“Close to Rs 1,600 crore of equity infusion has been done in the airline so far,” Kharola said.

The government has geared up to revive the airline that sits on accumulated losses of Rs 30,000 crore and has unpaid debt of over Rs 55,000 crore.
06/12/18 Nikita Vashisht/