Etihad team to meet Sharma amid talks for stake in Jet

A delegation from Abu Dhabi's Etihad Airways PJSC will meet commerce minister Anand Sharma in the next "couple of days," according to a government statement quoting the minister, amid reports that the Gulf carrier is close to buying a minority stake in India's Jet Airways.

Etihad is in talks to pick up a 24-per cent stake in Jet, India's biggest private carrier, for up to $330 million, according to reports emanating this month citing sources.

The government statement did not give any detail on the scheduled meeting with Etihad.

Meanwhile a report in Livemint portrayed the Etihad-Jet deal as virtually confirmed, citing unnamed sources.

The deal will make Jet Airways the first Indian carrier to take advantage of rules introduced by the government in September allowing a foreign airline to pick up a stake of up to 49 per cent in Indian carriers.

According to the report, the shares will go to Etihad, the national airline of the United Arab Emirates, by way of new stock and the dilution of promoter Jet Naresh Goyal's 80 per cent holding.