Paramount Airways to start international operations

February 20th, 2008 - 1:09 pm ICT by admin  

Mumbai, Feb 20 (IANS) Chennai-based regional carrier Paramount Airways India Ltd. plans to start international operations by 2011. Managing Director of Paramount Airways M. Thiagarajan told IANS: “As soon as we finish five years of operations in 2010, we plan to start international operations.”

Initially, Paramount Airways hopes to explore direct flight operations to select destinations on the lucrative European and US sectors.

As part of its preparation for flying international, Paramount is currently holding final negotiations with US aerospace major Boeing and Toulouse-based aircraft manufacturer Airbus for acquiring at least ten wide-bodied planes.

An official said the airline is actively considering Boeing’s B777 family of planes or Airbus A330 as its final choice.

The deal is likely to materialise with these airplane manufacturers and an announcement may be made during the ongoing Singapore Air Show, which opened Tuesday.

Currently airlines need to book in advance for wide-body planes because of excess demand reported by the manufacturers. The next delivery slot for fresh orders is after 2011.

The guidelines in India allow only carriers with five year’s experience on domestic routes and 20 planes in its fleet to fly overseas.

An airline needs to plan at least three years in advance for starting international operations as it involves route study and securing several approvals from the government.

For instance, Kingfisher had started preparations two years ago for international operations that are expected to start from August this year.

Paramount Airways, which started commercial flights in 2005, now has a fleet of five planes made by Brazil’s Embraer SA. “We will take a delivery of two more Embraers in May and June,” said Thiagarajan.

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