|Posted: Thu Dec 21, 2006 8:26 pm Post subject: Panel to review letting private carriers fly abroad: Patel
Panel to review letting private carriers fly abroad: Patel
NEW DELHI, DEC 21 (PTI)
Government will set up a panel next year to conduct a review of the policy of allowing private carriers to fly abroad, keeping in mind the liberalised bilaterals and burgeoning passenger traffic.
"We will set up a committee in the first half of next year to have a detailed review of the policy to amend or review it" to meet the shortage of air services to various global destinations, Civil Aviation Minister Praful Patel told reporters here.
Defending the existing policy, Patel said the requirements of Indian carriers were much different from those of other international airlines like those in the Gulf or city-states like Singapore.
Indian airlines have to operate to various sectors including the Northeast and Jammu and Kashmir, which were socially important but economically unviable.
Patel said a detailed study would be conducted by this panel regarding the liberalised bilaterals, growing passenger traffic and the ability of Indian carriers to fly abroad.
Regarding the merger of Indian and Air India, he said the Committee of Secretaries had already submitted their recommendations regarding the proposed merger scheme to the Group of Ministers headed by External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee.
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Confirms that IA/AI will hang on to the Gulf.