Minister rules out imemdiate cut in air faresSeptember 11th, 2008 - 9:38 pm ICT by IANS
New Delhi, Sep 11 (IANS) Even as aviation fuel prices have softened globally with some major international carriers cutting fuel surcharge, Civil Aviation Minister Praful Patel Thursday said there was little possibility of immediate reduction in air fares.”We hope that aviation fuel prices will have an effect on air fares. But to say this will happen immediately will not be correct as of now,” the minister said on the sidelines of an exhibition on airports here.
“If the fuel prices remain constant or fall, we can expect low air fares in the coming few months,” he added.
But global carrier Lufthansa Thursday announced an up to $100 reduction in fuel surcharge for a return ticket from India to the US or Canada.
Lufthansa’s announcement came days after Singapore Airlines announced reduction of fuel surcharge on flights to India, Gulf and some other sectors by S$10.
However, no airline in India has so far reduced fuel surcharge or fares because of the recent cut in aviation fuel prices.
The aviation industry in India has suffered a loss of over Rs.40 billion last year, which could double this year.
Regarding losses suffered by Indian airlines in the past two years owing to high aviation fuel costs, Patel said even if the prices stabilised at the prevailing levels, it would take domestic airlines some more time to come out of the red and pass on the benefits to air travellers.