How open are In­dian skies?

As in­ter­na­tional air­lines strug­gle with lim­ited fly­ing rights to In­dia, Sud­hir Sreed­ha­ran, Se­nior VP, Com­mer­cial (GCC, Sub­con­ti­nent, Africa), fly­dubai, speaks on re­stric­tions in tap­ping the high growth po­ten­tial be­tween In­dia & UAE.

TravTalk - India - - AVIATION -

As the Dubai sec­tor ex­hausts its bi­lat­eral seat ca­pac­ity of 62,500 flights a week be­tween In­dia and Dubai, fly­dubai is hop­ing to see a fresh round of talks to fur­ther en­hance the of­fer­ings on this sec­tor.

A study, com­mis­sioned by Emi­rates and con­ducted by the Na­tional Coun­cil of Ap­plied Eco­nomic Re­search (NCAER), said that the air­line’s op­er­a­tions in In­dia added $848 mil­lion to the coun­try’s gross do­mes­tic prod­uct, sup­ported over 86,000 In­dian jobs and gen­er­ated al­most $1.7 bil­lion in for­eign ex­change earn­ings in 2014-15. In light of these fig­ures, Sud­hir Sreed­ha­ran says, “We are strug­gling with lim­ited con­strained ca­pac­ity and are not grow­ing in In­dia. To­day, the seat ca­pac­i­ties on both sides stand com­pletely utilised. The last avi­a­tion bi­lat­eral talks were in 2014. We are hop­ing and wait­ing that the In­dian govern­ment calls for bi­lat­eral talks soon and comes up with a for­mula that helps in de­vel­op­ing cer­tain zones (spe­cial eco­nomic zones) and helps us open skies there.”

While Emi­rates con­tin­ues to be the long-haul car­rier from Dubai, fly­dubai wants to stay fo­cused to­wards the ter­tiary mar­kets and con­nect them to Dubai. “We have asked the In­dian au­thor­i­ties to con­sider giv­ing us ac­cess to 11 air­ports in the DONER re­gion. I have been ham­mer­ing the au­thor­i­ties in In­dia that they are not al­low­ing a de­mo­graphic fair rep­re­sen­ta­tion of In­dia for our youth to par­tic­i­pate in the growth of the GCC,” high­lights Sreed­ha­ran. The air­line also claims to be the first air­line to put a pe­ti­tion to fly to Bhubaneswar, Sri­na­gar and Chandi­garh. “Give me the ap­proval and we will land in six weeks. Give us the op­por­tu­nity and we’ll de­velop the air­port. The in­vest­ment on the flights and route de­vel­op­ment will be all ours and the jobs that will be cre­ated will ben­e­fit In­dia,” he adds.

Try­ing to find a win-win sit­u­a­tion for all, Sreed­ha­ran adds, “With over 80 air­ports in In­dia to­day, we can of­fer a for­mula where we can say that air­ports, un­til they reach a fixed an­nual ca­pac­ity bench­mark, will have an open sky pol­icy. This al­lows the in­ter­ested air­line to in­vest, cre­ate jobs and al­low more free move­ment of trade and people.”

Sud­hir Sreed­ha­ran Se­nior Vice Pres­i­dent, Com­mer­cial

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from India

© PressReader. All rights reserved.