Bailout for cash-strapped Jet Airways

Issue: 1 / 2019Photo(s): By Boeing

Ruling out possibility of bailout package for crisis-hit Jet Airways, Civil Aviation Minister Suresh Prabhu said it is for the management of private carriers to ensure that they function properly and take appropriate measures based on prevailing market conditions. The Ministry of Civil Aviation (MoCA) has also decided not to intervene with respect to request by Jet Airways for more time for making payments to airport operators. Jet Airways has been grappling with financial woes that has also resulted in the full-service carrier delaying payment of salaries to staff, including pilots. The airline posted a loss of 1,261 crore in the quarter that ended September 2018. Responding to queries related to Jet Airways, the Minister said that in a deregulated atmosphere, the Ministry’s endeavour is to deal with sector-specific issues.

Former Civil Aviation Secretary R.N. Choubey said the airline wanted some more lead time for making payments to airport operators, but that was something to be done commercially between the two entities and the Ministry would not like to get involved. On November 13, 2018, Jet Airways said it is at various stages of discussions with multiple “interested parties” for capital infusion and partial stake sale in its loyalty programme Jet Privilege. The airline is looking for investors to tide over the liquidity crisis, which has resulted in delayed payments to some vendors and salaries to a section of its over 16,000 employees.