India and Sweden sign an agreement to promote cooperation in smart and sustainable aircraft technology


11 Sep 2022

On August 25, 2022, at the AAI Office in Rajiv Gandhi Bhawan, New Delhi, India, the Airports Authority of India (AAI) and LFV Air Navigation Services of Sweden (LUFTFARTSVERKET) signed a Memorandum of Understanding to facilitate partnerships that will foster the innovation of smart, sustainable aviation technology.


To explore innovative aviation solutions, the agreement brings together air navigation actors from Sweden and India, two countries with some of the world's fastest-growing aviation markets. Sweden has a track record of developing and deploying the next generation of sustainable aviation technology.

Both parties acknowledged in the Memorandum of Understanding the urgent need for swift development of next-generation smart airports and the requirement to create sustainable transportation systems.

Representative | BioFuels International

The MoU further noted:

Technical transfer and information exchange programmes in aviationEncourage cordial ties between the two organisationsAttempt to increase technological collaboration at airportsEncourage the creation of a secure, reliable, sustainable, and effective aviation sectorPositive contributions in promoting bilateral and international trade

Innovating sustainably within the aviation sector is imperative. India and Sweden have the ambition, skills, and knowledge to be pivotal in the industry’s green transformation – shaping the future with collaboration to delivers smart airports and aviation technology that delivers economic growth and a greener futuresaid Jan Larsson, CEO, Business Sweden

This MoU will open the door for bilateral aviation knowledge and technology exchange between the two nations. Utilising Swedish innovation and knowledge would enable Indian businesses to grow faster. The companies may collaborate in areas of common interest under the auspices of the MoU.

A Joint Working Group will be set up to prioritise interest areas and promote cooperation between the two nations. In addition to other ongoing engagements in sustainability, healthcare, innovation, energy, and infrastructure, this MoU will be essential for advancing government-to-government ties between Sweden and India in the aviation industry.

We are looking forward to this addition to the already expansive India-Sweden collaboration, which already include sustainability, health, innovation, energy, and will now extend to civil aviation. I’m looking forward to seeing how the MoU can foster more opportunities for Sweden and India to explore climate-smart solutions within the aviation sectorsaid Klas Molin, Ambassador of Sweden to India

Klas Molin | NDTV

The government organisations of Sweden and India, respectively, AAI and LFV, will collaboratively work on the following areas of cooperation:

Air traffic managementAir traffic controlRemote airport management and traffic controlAirspace design and planningAirport design and infrastructureDigitalised airport and aviationCapability and trainingSustainable airports and aviationProcesses for pilotsProcesses for scale-up

India Sweden partnership is on the upswing. This MoU covers one more new ground and will facilitate technology collaborations to improve safety, sustainability and efficiency in the aviation sector.  This is an important development also in the context of the booming regional air connectivity in Indiasaid Tanmaya Lal, Ambassador of India to Sweden

Tanmaya Lal | IndiaTIES

Mr. M. Suresh, Member (Air Navigation Services), AAI, and Mr. Magnus Corell, Deputy Director General, LFV Sweden, signed the Memorandum of Understanding.

ALSO READ - AAI partners with a Swedish air navigation provider for smart aviation solutions


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Go First to postpone IPO again till November

Radhika Bansal

10 Sep 2022

Wadia group-owned Go First has once again deferred its initial public offering (IPO) to raise INR 3,600 crore till November on weak consumer sentiment surrounding aviation stocks.

ALSO READ - Go First files for IPO at INR 3,600 crore valuation

"Go First has been advised to wait for the new ATF pricing mechanism to kick in before launching its IPO. The new ATF pricing mechanism is expected to boost sentiment in the aviation sector," a person aware of the airline’s plans said.

The airline had planned to come out with its delayed IPO in the second quarter of this financial year, but will now wait for a couple of months before considering a launch.

Go First to postpone IPO again till November

Another person said that while Go First was optimistic about its IPO on the back of a recovery in domestic and overseas air travel, a weak April-June quarter, accompanied by rising costs of aviation turbine fuel, has caused the airline to delay its IPO plans once again.

Go First's Draft Red Herring Prospectus has expired on August 26 and the airline will need to refile its IPO papers with the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI).

A public issue or rights issue needs to be opened within 12 months of the date of issuance of observations, according to SEBI regulations. This period was extended by six months during the pandemic, but no longer.

ALSO READ - Go First IPO set to expire soon

Go First's Draft Red Herring Prospectus has expired on August 26 and the airline will need to refile its IPO papers with the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI).

This is the third time Go First has delayed its IPO plans since 2021. The airline had received approval from the market regulator for its IPO in 2021 but had held back the share sale plan first in August 2021 after SEBI called the promoters, the Wadias, for a pending inquiry, and then in December 2021, Go First further delayed the offering due to the outbreak of the Omicron wave.

ALSO READ - Go First’s IPO will take place on December 8, with proceeds going towards debt reduction

The Russia-Ukraine war, which started in February, and the mega IPO of Life Insurance Corporation (LIC) also delayed the airline's IPO plans. Go First has been planning a listing since at least 2015 when it was known as GoAir.

Prices of ATF

Aviation turbine fuel (ATF) prices have shot up almost 120% since May 2021, peaking at INR 141,232.87 per kl in June.

The new mechanism is expected to help airlines predict ATF price movements based on international prices and help them be better prepared in case global crude prices rise.

To reduce ATF prices in India, the government had asked oil marketing companies (OMCs) to switch to the MOPAG (Mean of Platts Arab Gulf)-based pricing system instead of the prevailing dual pricing mechanism to determine ATF prices.

ALSO READ - New ATF pricing gives a boast for airlines in India

The new mechanism is expected to help airlines predict ATF price movements based on international prices and help them be better prepared in case global crude prices rise.

Fuel costs now account for 50% of overall airline expenses for domestic airlines in India. Airlines in India had to find a way around rising ATF prices even as the industry was stepping up operations to cater to rising demand after two years of the COVID-19 pandemic and fare caps imposed by the government still in place.

Go First plans to take deliveries of 10 aircraft per year until 2023-24 and another 72 aircraft will be delivered between 2023-24 and 2026-27.

Go First plans to use INR 2,200 crore to be raised from the IPO to reduce debt and repay lessors. The remaining INR 1,600 crore will be deployed to expand the airline’s operations in India and internationally, including adding flights to Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Sri Lanka, and Nepal.

The airline expects domestic passenger traffic to surpass pre-COVID-19 levels by 5-10% by the second quarter of 2022-23 in the absence of a new wave of COVID-19.

ALSO READ - Go First plans to launch the IPO by July after months of deliberation; mulls inducting more aircraft

The airline plans to convert its entire fleet of Airbus A320 Neos and Airbus A320 Ceos to Airbus A321 Neos. The airline currently has 52 A320 Neos and 6 A320 Ceos in its fleet.

Go First plans to take deliveries of 10 aircraft per year until 2023-24 and another 72 aircraft will be delivered between 2023-24 and 2026-27.

(With Inputs from MoneyControl)

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Akasa Air set to launch flights from the national capital

Jinen Gada

10 Sep 2022

Akasa Air will launch flights from the national capital, effective next month, as the airline eyes expansion in northern India. As Akasa receives more aircraft, other towns in the north are likely to follow Delhi and feature on the carrier’s schedule.

The airline has so far maintained that it is on the right track and plans to increase its fleet size rapidly at the rate of one new aircraft every two weeks until all 72 B737 MAXs on order have been received.

The airline has opened bookings for daily flights between Delhi and Ahmedabad, effective 7 October. Fares on the route start from ?4,578, as per the company website.

Akasa Air had on 7 August operated its maiden flight from Mumbai to Ahmedabad.

Akasa has also opened bookings for flights from Delhi to Bengaluru with effect from 7 October. The fares on this route are currently around ?7,005. Akasa Air, which commenced services on the Bengaluru-Mumbai route on Friday, expects to operate more than 150 weekly flights by the end of September.

ALSO READ - Akasa Air to expand operations with 150 weekly flights

On August 17, days after the passing away of Akasa Air's key investor Rakesh Jhunjhunwala, the airline's CEO Vinay Dube said the carrier is well-capitalised and its growth is secure with the financial means to place an order for more planes.

Akasa Air has opted for the narrow-body fleet of Boeing 737 MAX aircraft with a total order book of 72 planes, of which 18 are to join within the current financial year.

Low fares are excellent news for passengers, but unhealthy value wars can affect the enterprise of the airways. As soon as the taxes are accounted for, little or no is left for airways if the costs drop an excessive amount.

Akasa Air has already announced flights for six routes across five cities -- Mumbai, Ahmedabad, Kochi, Bengaluru and Chennai.

It must be noted that Akasa Air completed one month of operations on 7 September and has expanded its fleet, with the fifth aircraft recently joined.

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New price mechanism for jet fuel: Centre

Jinen Gada

10 Sep 2022

The centre is working on a new price mechanism for aviation turbine fuel (ATF) and the ministry of petroleum and natural gas is in talks with all the stakeholders on the new mechanism.

A new pricing mechanism for aviation turbine fuel that aims to reduce domestic jet fuel costs by at least 15 per cent is likely to be implemented within the next two months, industry executives said.

Talks are underway for a new price mechanism for jet fuel.

The change in the pricing policy is being made after talks between the civil aviation and petroleum & natural gas ministries. Oil marketing companies such as Bharat Petroleum Corporation, Hindustan Petroleum Corporation and Indian Oil Corporation have decided to shift to the MOPAG (Mean of Platts Arab Gulf)-based pricing system.

An industry source said now there would be a single uniform pricing system instead of the prevailing dual pricing mechanism for domestic and overseas airlines.

About imports from Russia, Puri said: “Earlier it was 0.2%, we bought more in March, April, May and June and other countries also gave more. It will continue, this market is determined.”

India has demonstrated “great resilience” to face the global energy crisis.

Addressing an event, the minister said that though oil prices have fallen of late, oil marketing companies will need more time to recover their losses.

Petroleum Secretary Jain said the increase in petrol and diesel prices in India in the last two years has been lower than the average price hike across the world, adding that India’s crude oil production will increase next year.

ALSO READ - Jyotiraditya Scindia requests the finance ministry to rationalise excise on jet fuel

(With Inputs from Mint)

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Tata group set to have one central headquarters for all its airlines

Jinen Gada

10 Sep 2022

Tata group is set to relocate Air India, AirIndia Express and Air Asia India headquarters to the newly-constructed Vatika One-on-One campus in Gurugram as part of the group’s plan to consolidate workspaces.

Beginning this month, privatized carrier Air India will vacate its staff from their decades-old offices set up on government-owned premises across the country.

The movement to private offices will see Air India’s largest base of staff which works out of Delhi’s Airlines House, Safdarjung Complex, GSD Complex and IGI Terminal One move to an interim space in Gurugram this month before ultimately relocating to campus at the newly-constructed Vatika One-On-One campus by March 2023, said Air India.

ALSO READ - Air India intends to purchase a 100% stake in AirAsia India; Tatas to relocate all 4 airlines to Gurgaon

Air India to vacate several government offices, and move to a new space in Gurugram.

IndiGo, Vistara and SpiceJet are already headquartered in Gurugram. The government premises that the airline, which privatized in January, is currently occupied belongs to Air India Assets Holding Ltd (AIAHL), a government-owned special purpose vehicle set up to handle non-core assets including land and building and 75% of Air India’s debt.

ALSO READ - Air India to lease 400,000 sq ft office space in Gurugram

“A senior team is also relooking at the offices in different cities which are housed in legacy premises, with some in Chennai and Kochi having already moved to modern office premises.”The airline said.

In its strategy to consolidate workspaces, Air India said its regionalized organisation structure will be progressively disbanded and replaced with a centralised one.

Idea is to house employees of all group airlines, including Vistara and Air Asia India, at one location.

Flexible work hours are also being offered to employees, it said adding that the airline will provide last mile connectivity to the office premises from the closest public transport stations.

“The consolidation of many premises under one roof, and the evolution from a regionalized to centralised structure, is a significant milestone in Air India’s transformation journey. Aside from improving the opportunity for collaboration, upgrading employees’ work environment and enhancing effectiveness both within and across functions, it is a powerful catalyst for cultural transformation. Together with the deployment of new technology and communication platforms, and the co-location of Air India with sister airlines, it is an exciting step forward.”Campbell Wilson, CEO and Managing Director, Air India.

(With inputs from TOI)

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Tuticorin airport in Tamil Nadu to get an INR 381 crore makeover

Radhika Bansal

10 Sep 2022

Airports Authority of India on Friday, September 9 said it is carrying out a major upgradation work at its Tuticorin airport in Tamil Nadu at an investment of INR 381-crore to cater to rising passenger traffic.

The upgradation work includes widening and extension of the runway to enable operations of A-321 type of aircraft, construction of a new apron, new terminal building, ATC tower-cum-technical block-cum-control tower, among others, AAI said in a statement.

Spread over 13,500 sq mt of space, the new terminal building will be able to handle 600 passengers during peak hours and will have all the modern facilities and passenger amenities with provision for two aerobridges along with car parking facilities and a new approach road, it added.

Inspired by the famous Chettinad houses of the region, the intuitive form of the new terminal will create a unique architectural identity in the southern region and will add a new dimension to the terminal design. Strong references to the local culture and traditional architecture will be expressed in the building’s architecture.

The interiors of the building reflect the colours and culture of the city through materials and textures in a contemporary manner. The new terminal will be a four-star GRIHA-rated energy-efficient building with sustainability features.

The airport development project also includes widening extension and strengthening work of the existing runway, making the airport suitable for the operation of A-321 type of aircraft. The upgraded facility will also have a fire station, isolation bay and five aircraft parking bays to park A-321 type of aircraft.

The upgradation work includes widening and extension of the runway to enable operations of A-321 type of aircraft

Up-gradation of the airport will not only fulfil the demand of the local community for enhanced passenger services but will also promote trade & tourism in Tuticorin and neighbouring districts like Tirunelveli, Tenkasi, and Kanyakumari.

The project for up-gradation and expansion of the airport is likely to be completed by December 2023.

Tuticorin Airport is located 16.9 km from Thoothukudi, Tamil Nadu serving the districts of Thoothukkudi, Tirunelveli, Tenkasi and Kanniyakumari in southern Tamil Nadu. It was inaugurated on 30 April 1992.

The airport was ISO 9001:2015 quality certified on 13 April 2018. It is the fifth busiest airport in Tamil Nadu after Chennai, Coimbatore, Tiruchirappalli and Madurai.