No one is interested in reviving the fortune of India’s oldest and premier international passenger carrier – the Air India amongst the business community. A really bad news. Is not it?
The idea to sell the monolith was mooted by none other than the Prime Minister Narendra Modi. He offered to sell flag carrier but the proposal attracted zero interest from all prospective investors. Experts say it is a blow to the Union Government’s privatization plan, aimed at disposing of the sick company.
The deadline was Thursday. As the deadline expired, no bidder was spotted to propose purchasing majority stake in Air India which was offered along with 500 crores US $ debt. Some reliable sources reveal that the government will decide the future action in this regard in the coming few days.
The sale was aimed at lowering the fiscal deficit at 3.3 per cent of GDP. this goal is already under pressure from different sections of the society ahead of a national election in the coming year.
IndiGo was said to be the only one to take interest in its international operations. It too backed out when the terms enumerated the bidder will need to take over the entire fleet, which includes all domestic flights of the carrier too.
Later, some terms were given relaxations to attract buyers. Even, the period to make bids was also extended, but no one took interest for the airline. It is noteworthy that the giant carrier flies some strategic routes. On the negative side, it also has one of the industry’s highest employees-per-aircraft and route ratios, which makes its total operations unattractive.
Experts of such deals believe that the current condition is perhaps not conducive as the domestic airline industry too is currently under pressure due to the impact of rising fuel costs. The weak global currency may be the other factor, people are susceptible to the deal.