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India Aviation Industry Newsletter 10 July

India Aviation Industry Newsletter 10 July

Air India commences Delhi-Washington Dulles service 

Air India launched three times weekly Delhi-Washington Dulles service. According to OAG, the carrier operates Boeing 777-300ER aircraft on the route, and Air India is the sole carrier. US State of Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe said: “Virginia is committed to expanding and growing our relationships with the international community, especially our friends in India. We look forward to the opportunities this new route will provide for people in Virginia and India alike. This will be an important avenue for business, tourism and educational opportunities between our two great countries”. The service is expected to attract an additional 30,000 leisure and business travellers, and USD30 million in total economic impact p/a to the Washington Capital Region.

India’s Aviation Ministry seeks 2-month delay of GST

India’s Aviation Ministry sought to postpone implementation of the country’s biggest-ever tax reform to give airlines more time to bring their ticket-booking software up to speed. The move marked the first effort by a central government entity to postpone the planned July 1 nationwide rollout of the Goods and Services Tax, which will replace more than a dozen existing indirect taxes.

India back at top of domestic air travel growth chart: IATA

According to the International Air Transport Association (IATA), India restores its title of being world’s fastest growing domestic air travel market in May. India noticed the growth of about 17.7% as compared to its previous year data in the same month. IATA claimed that India till March had been the fastest growing domestic aviation market for 22 months in a row but in April, Russia overtook India by witnessing 16.7% growth as compared to India’s 15.3%. But India reclaimed its position in the next month itself.

India emerges as the top inbound source market for Sri Lanka

Witnessing the growth and potential from India, Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau (SLTPB) has taken a step forward in consolidating their presence in the Indian market. SLTPB expects more than 26% growth in the footfall this year and aims for about 4, 50,000 Indian tourist, to discover the beautiful destination in 2017. Sri Lanka is growing as, ‘a destination for all seasons’! The year 2016 saw approximately 356,729 Indian tourist visiting Sri Lanka compared to around 3,16,247 in 2015. In 2016 destination Sri Lanka, saw a growth of 12.8% in Indian arrival over last year.

Indian-origin man proposes $6-bn cheaper Heathrow runway plans

Surinder Arora, founder and chairman of the Arora Group, said there were “cheaper and better ways” to expand Britain’s biggest airport in proposals sent to the government as part of a public consultation. Arora said his alternative plans for a third runway and new terminal would involve less disruption to local communities, partly because a smaller amount of land would be required, which he claims would be £6.7bn cheaper than the airport’s current scheme.

IndiGo’s Play for Air India Draws Mixed Reactions

The Indian ministry of civil aviation’s decision to divest Air India and its subsidiaries late last month found a suitor in the country’s largest and most successful budget carrier, IndiGo, within hours of the announcement. However, the news met with mixed reactions from industry, ranging from doubts about IndiGo’s real intent to optimism that a takeover could finally give India a strong and vibrant international flag carrier.  “Our interest in Air India is primarily in its international operations,” wrote Indigo president and director Aditya Ghosh in a letter to his employees.

‘India still edgy about in-flight Wi-Fi’

Civil Aviation Secretary R.N. Choubey said on Friday India was the only country other than North Korea to not allow Wi-Fi facility in aircraft, while hitting out at security agencies for being “unidimensional.” The Secretary said security at the new airports inducted under the recently announced regional connectivity scheme UDAN would be “airport specific”.

SriLankan Airlines considering flights to Ahmedabad

With SriLankan Airlines set to expand its reach in India to Hyderabad, Coimbatore and Visakhapatnam this week, the airline is also looking at the possibility of bringing Ahmedabad to its route network. “We were trying to increase the capacity to Delhi and Mumbai to 11 frequencies from July. However, we managed to get a clearance from India’s DGCA (Directorate General of Civil Aviation) for 4 additional frequencies weekly to only Delhi because of the non-availability of slots at Mumbai Airport. The flights to Delhi started operating last week, where we now offer 11 weekly connections. While evaluating our options in West India, after Mumbai, Ahmedabad seems to be the best option. The cards are on the table for Ahmedabad and the management will take a call soon,”

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