A depressed Indian economy and a weakened rupee this year have made attendance for international visitors cost effective, although not for domestic companies that are increasingly cutting costs. In the absence of anticipated airliner orders, business aviation is expected to enjoy a high profile in Hyderabad this week, with several new contracts expected.
States and territories of India
Dubai-based aircraft sales and aircraft management specialist and operator of the region’s largest fleet of business jets,Empire Aviation Group, which has been a subsidiary of Air Works India Engineering since 2012, is looking to expand support to the booming Southeast Asia market. A strategic tie-up is to be announced in the first quarter of 2014, Paras Dhamecha, executive director at Empire Aviation, told AIN.
Flexjet and Abercrombie & Kent introduced “Passport to the World,” the first completely private jet experience circumnavigating the globe. For $1.5 million, guests will travel for two weeks aboard a Challenger 605 operated by Jet Solutions to seven landmark destinations and get “exclusive access to hidden wonders that are out of reach to the rest of the world,” ranging from the Forbidden City to the Taj Mahal. It includes a Japanese tea ceremony in Kyoto and a private opening of Istanbul’s Hagia Sophia, off limits to the public.
Heightened awareness of the steady growth in regional air traffic among small and medium-sized cities has convinced the Indian government to commit some $2 billion for the development of a 70- to 90-seat civilian aircraft. “This is a strategic sector where there is a need to have a presence in the long term, particularly in view of the rapid growth of our aviation sector.” said Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.
A target for criticism over delays in projects in the past, India’s largest defense manufacturer, government-owned Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd. (HAL) is undergoing a transformation of its human resource through training and innovative programs. This is focusing on two urgent requirements–the overdue Light Combat Aircraft (LCA); and the Intermediate Jet Trainer (IJT).
India’s long-awaited new civil aviation policy needs to address key issues on infrastructure and high taxation, according to Tony Tyler, director general and CEO of the International Air Transport Association (IATA). Speaking at the annual India Aviation Day in New Delhi on March 26, he urged the country’s government to produce a coordinated policy framework for aviation that all relevant departments, including the ministries for finance, economy, development, rural infrastructure and tourism, can pursue.
Mahindra Aerospace, currently India’s only manufacturer of light aircraft for private/utility use, is preparing to open its new 270,000-sq-ft facility near Bangalore. This will be used for manufacturing metal components, aircraft assemblies and aerostructures, according to executive director and global CEO Arvind Mehra.
India’s bid to design and develop its own indigenous civil aircraft is once again under discussion. According to government sources, a new policy decision is expected on the civil aircraft program by February 12.
Indian defense minister Shri AK Antony will inaugurate the ninth biennial Aero India show at the Yelahanka Air Force Station near Bangalore on Wednesday. The February 6-10 event will once again have a strong bias towards the defense sector, but should also see evidence of Indian companies progressing upwards through the aerospace food chain.
India’s Business Aircraft Operators Association (BAOA) is threatening legal action against financial penalties imposed since July 1 by Mumbai International Airport (MIAL) on transient aircraft parked at Mumbai Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport beyond an agreed number of days. The penalty is seven times more than the present cost of parking, BAOA said.
The airport, which cannot be expanded beyond its single runway, has been a concern for many years as commercial and business aviation traffic has increased. A second airport is at least seven years away from completion.
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