Qatar Airways interested in buying Air India if it comes without baggage: Al Baker

Qatar Airways interested in buying Air India if it comes without baggage: Al Baker

By QLNews

It is no secret that Qatar Airways is keen to start operations in India as a domestic carrier. However, the way forward has not been an easy one.

While the Government of India is looking to privatise its national carrier Air India, it has not succeeded so far due to a variety of reasons including huge debts.

Qatar Airways chief Akbar Al Baker recently said his company would be interested in buying Air India, provided it came without any ‘baggages,’ reported Indian daily Economic Times

“We would be interested in Air India if we had a strong partner. We need to have a very strong partner and we take the airline without the baggage,” he was quoted as saying by Economic Times.

He then clarified his statement.

“Look, it isn’t the debt that’s the baggage — it’s the other functions that Air India carries out such as ground handling, engineering and things like that. We would be interested only in the airline,” Al Baker said.

Al baker has effectively said that the national carrier’s total debt of over Rs 48,000 crores was not the problem.

While the Indian government was keen to sell up to a 76% stake in the loss-making carrier, it had also made clear that the deal would include stakes in Air India’s subsidiaries like Air India Express and ground handling company Air India Singapore Airport Terminal Services (AISATS). This condition eventually proved to be a deal breaker for most interested buyers.

Al baker said Qatar Airways was also not happy with the Indian government’s handling of the issue relating to the increase in bilateral flying entitlements between the two countries.

“Unfortunately, the civil aviation ministry has been unfair with Qatar Airways (in case of granting increase in bilateral rights). While we were restricted, everyone was getting bilaterals,” Al Baker was quoted as saying by Money Control.

While Dubai and Abu Dhabi have seen significant increase in their flying rights quota with India, bilateral flying rights between India and Qatar have not increased, the report suggested.

“First, there was a condition that Indian carriers need to utilise 80% of existing bilaterals. They’ve now reached 84%, still there’s no light at the end of the tunnel,” Al Baker said.

By Captain_Tsubasa• 4 years 3 weeks ago.
Captain_Tsubasa

Indian Govt needs to sell each entity of Air India separately.. Selling everything in one entity doesn't seem to be a good strategy !

By ashokstar• 4 years 3 weeks ago.
ashokstar

Frist meet the Amit shaji to increase the seating capacity.

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