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India: six new airlines, 50 new airports?

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Six carriers get approval to launch within a year

India’s skies could get far more competitive with the entry of six new airlines. They are lining up for lift off within the year after receiving approval from the country’s Ministry of Civil Aviation.

The six are New Delhi-based Zexus Air; Air One Aviation, which already has charter operations with business jets and helicopters; Premier Air, to operate out of Bengaluru; Hyderabad-based Turbo Megha, which now operates charter flights; Air Carnival from the south; and Zav Airways, to offer services from the relatively untapped north-east.

The airlines must now obtain air operators’ certificates from the Directorate General of Civil Aviation before beginning services.

“Smaller airlines with lower overhead costs will rationalise air fares, bringing sanity to the highly fluctuating market,” said Anil Kumar, managing director of Acma Travel Tours Bengaluru. “There must be parity and value-for-money offers to stabilise a rocky aviation industry.”

Meanwhile, the Ministry of Civil Aviation says it will build 50 new airports in non-metropolitan cities, with a total cost of Rs15 billion (€186 million) within the next few years. The plan will see no-frills airports appear in Tier Two and Three cities such as Navi Mumbai, Juhu, Goa, Kannur, Pune, Sriperumbudur, and Bellary by 2017.

TTG Asia

[pictured: Novotel Bengaluru TechPark; photo courtesy Accor]

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