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Friday, August 08, 2014, 15:00 Hrs [IST]
Air India opposes MoCA proposal of abolishing 5/20 rule
By TBM Staff | Mumbai
Air India Ltd. has opposed the proposal of the Ministry of Civil Aviation (MoCA), Government of India to abolish the
five-year, 20-aircraft eligibility norm for domestic carriers planning to operate on international routes.
"We believe that the eligibility norms should not be completely abolished. You can bring down from the current five years
and 20 aircraft, but they should not be abolished. Any airline that flies international should be required to prove it in the
domestic skies first," said a senior Air India executive, as per a report by Mihir Mishra in The Economic Times.
Air India's view has been conveyed verbally to the Ministry, the executive said.
At present, domestic carriers need to be in operation for at least five years and have a fleet of minimum 20 aircraft to be
eligible to fly on global routes. A Cabinet note aimed at easing these norms was moved by the UPA government just before
the Lok Sabha polls, but it could not be taken up as the election code of conduct kicked in soon after.
"We need to talk to all airlines before moving ahead on the issue. While we believe that these norms hamper the growth of
new Indian airlines in the international space, the voices opposing the abolition have raised questions on the timing of the
move," an MoCA official said. Air India, J et Airways (India) Ltd., SpiceJ et Ltd., and IndiGo are the domestic carriers that
operate on international routes. GoAir will become eligible to fly abroad after it inducts its 20th aircraft. The move to abolish
the 5/20 rule will benefit Tata-Singapore Airlines Ltd. (SIA) and AirAsia India.

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