With a skeleton fleet, Jet Airways halts international flights
12 April 2019
Jet Airways on Thursday discontinued all international services after the beleaguered airline reported an operating fleet of 12 aircraft, the smallest fleet among schedule domestic carriers. Civil aviation regulations require a domestic airline to have a minimum of 20 planes to be eligible to fly abroad.
Jet is operating 12 aircraft today, according to DGCA sources. These include 7 wide body (six B777s and one Airbus A330), 3 Boeing 737s and two turboprop ATRs.
With its fleet strength depleting on a daily basis and oil companies refusing to fuel even operating aircraft, Jet Airways is close to a shutdown.
Meanwhile, bidding for the airline is gathering pace with Etihad Airways also joining the fray. Reports citing sources say Jet’s Gulf-based partner has submitted expression of interest and intends to bid for 49 per cent stake, now that Naresh Goyal is no more at the helm.
While Jet Airways is yet to confirm it has suspended international operations, industry sources said, "The airline has suspended west bound international flights from Thursday night, till Friday morning." These includes flights to London and Amsterdam.
According to regulations, an airline needs to have a minimum fleet of 20 planes to operate international flights.
Domestically, another executive added, the airline may operate a much truncated flight schedule on Friday, and mostly from Mumbai. The exact number couldn't be verified.
With cash hardly coming in and lenders failing to transfer Rs1,500 crore in emergency funding, the airline fears more grounding of planes.
Banks have transferred only about Rs250 crore of the proposed Rs1,500 crore fresh funding.
Apart from Etihad and Naresh Goyal himself, a clutch of private equity players including TPG, and Air Canada are reported to be among the possible bidders.