Indian Aviation Minister suggests Initial Public Offer of Air IndiaJune 1st, 2009 - 9:04 pm ICT by ANI
New Delhi, June 1(ANI): Union Civil Aviation minister Praful Patel said on Monday that in the near future, the government might come up with an initial public offering (IPO) of the national carrier, Air India.
Patel was addressing reporters at Rajiv Gandhi Bhawan here soon after taking over his second tenure. He, however, clarified that the government was not planning to disinvest the national carrier.
“If the stock markets do better than what they have been so far the initial public offering (IPO) of Air India could also be considered in the near future. Of course it is not going to loose its public sector character. It is not going to be privatized or disinvested completely. But the fact is that it will bring much more — I would say needed equity infusion. It will bring in much more accountability and I am sure with the large participation from the shareholder family, I think it will be a good thing for Air India’s long-term future,” said Praful Patel.
Patel also expressed concern over the loss that the airline was experiencing currently.
He assured that the government would take required steps to rationalize taxes in the civil aviation sector.
“The only thing which I can do and which the government will try to do in future is to see that more and more rationalization of taxes; in this case now the only major tax that I see is the sales tax on aviation turbine fuel (ATF) which again I will try to take it up with states again and again. And I can assure everybody that we will do our best, we will take it up more and more meaningfully,” Praful Patel added.
Air India has been incurring huge losses due to the global economic meltdown and declining number of passengers. (ANI)
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