Paris Air Show: Sukhoi Civil-Alliance Air talks for SuperJet 100 at an advanced stage

Paris/Mumbai: Alliance Air, likely to transform as a regional low cost carrier under the newly merged entity, Air India, is in talks with Sukhoi Civil Aircraft for purchase of its 60-90-seat offering, the SuperJet 100. Alliance Air is likely to be positioned as a 'regional carrier' under the Air India Express brand.

Speaking at the Paris Air Show, Anatoly A Mezhevov, regional sales director, Sukhoi Civil Aircraft, confirmed that the company was in talks with Indian Airlines for sale of the SuperJet 100 to Alliance Air. According to reports, Mezhevov also confirmed that the talks between Sukhoi and the newly merged Indian aviation entity were in an advanced stage.

So far, Air India Express has been operating as a low cost carrier on international routes, but its charter is likely to be expanded to domestic operations as well, with the newly merged State-owned carriers rationalising their operations. As part of such an operation, Alliance Air is likely to be co-opted as a regional budget carrier.

Market reports would also have it that the Sukhoi jet may be offered at a 25 per cent discount over the prices of more established brands in the domestic market, such as ATR, Bombardier and Embraer.

It may also add free pilot training and spares support by way of a sweetener.