Cabinet clears aviation policy for easier travel & lower fares
New Delhi: The Cabinet on Wednesday gave its approval to a new civil aviation policy that will lead to partial abolition of the 5/20 rule and enable new carriers like Vistara and Air Asia to start international operations sooner.
What does the new Aviation policy says:
According to the new Civil Aviation Policy released by the ministry, the government has decided to scrap a requirement that mandated airlines to have five years of domestic operations to be eligible to fly overseas.
An airline will, however, have to allocate 20 aircraft or 20% of their total fleet of aircraft, whichever is higher, to the domestic sector if they wish to fly overseas. This effectively means a carrier must have a minimum 20 aircraft in its domestic fleet.
What officials said:
A ministry official said, “this is to ensure that any new airlines starting business in India should essentially serve the remote parts of the country.”
Mahesh Sharma, Minister of State for Civil Aviation, had earlier hinted at this proposal. “In place of 5/20, we can make it 3/10 or 3/12. We have also looked at options like 0/10 and 0/20,” he had said.
What experts indicated:
Experts feel that it will not be easy to meet the condition of 20 aircraft immediately.
“There is an extreme shortage of experienced commanders in India. Given the likely fleet expansion by Indian carriers and the likely attrition, India needs around 1,000 to 1,200 commanders over the next 4–5 years. For a start-up airline, it will take at least 3–4 years to ramp up to 20 aircraft,” stated the experts.