Tuesday, October 25, 2022

Airline relaunching complicated but close, prospects promising: Jet Airways CEO

Veteran aviation professional and the chief executive officer (CEO) of the revamped Jet Airways, Sanjiv Kapoor, expressed hope about soon relaunching their "fantastic" airline after nearly six months of announcing the revival plan.

Although he didn't share the specifics, he talked about the airline's recruitment plans, prospects of India's aviation industry, and the scope for growth in an interview with Hindustan Times.

Kapoor told HT that the airline's relaunch is taking a little longer than expected because they are trying to sign the "best possible" contracts regarding IT, distribution, ground handling, and engine and maintenance, apart from the aircraft contracts.

He said it was the first time in the country that an airline was being revived. He said it is complicated, but they are "close."

Talking about the growth in aviation in India over the last two decades, Kapoor called it nothing short of phenomenal.

In 2000, the total number of domestic passengers was 1.37 crore, which increased to 6.14 crore by 2013—the year he entered the Indian aviation industry.

Before the COVID-19 pandemic, the number of passengers had reached 14.3 crore in 2019.

Kapoor said the biggest boost for the industry was the states reducing the value-added tax (VAT) on aviation turbine fuel (ATF) in the last few years.

Varying state to state, it earlier ranged from 25-30%, which was slashed to 5% and even 1% in some states.

Regional connectivity schemes—such as Ude Desh Ka Aam Naagrik (UDAN)—have significantly raised the number of flights and passengers.

25/10/22 Prateek Talukdar/NewsBytes

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