Foreign carriers may soon buy stake in Indian airlines

January 7th, 2009 - 10:03 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, Jan 7 (IANS) Foreign airlines may soon be allowed to buy equity stake in domestic carriers, a senior government official said here Wednesday.”We are in talks with the industry stakeholders. We have to first evaluate how much additional investment we need in the form of FDI in the aviation sector,” Aviation Secretary M. Madhavan Nambiar said at the Indo-US Chambers of Commerce summit.

Though foreign investment is allowed up to 49 percent in Indian air operators, foreign carriers are still barred from owning stake in domestic carriers.

Many foreign carriers, however, have shown interest in owning stake in Indian airlines.

Nambiar added that the government would sign a bilateral safety agreement with the US next year, which would help the two countries share their technologies.

The Bilateral Aviation Safety Agreement (BASA) is expected to help Indian companies market their products more effectively in global level, an aviation ministry official said.

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