Air India’s ground handling, engineering units’ sale on track

NEW DELHI: The government is expected to push ahead with sale of Air India’s ground handling and engineering subsidiaries and will seek expression of interest in the coming weeks, while taking up the privatisation of Alliance Air later.
“In terms of the process we are better prepared to deal with the ground handling and engineering companies. We will start the process shortly,” a senior officer told TOI. On July 27, TOIwas the first to report about the proposed sale of the erstwhile subsidiaries of Air India, which was sold to the Tata Group a few months ago.
The companies had been transferred to Air India Assets Holding (AIAHL) at book value. The governmentretained Rs 44,679 crore of AI’s debt in this special purpose vehicle, which also took over prized real estate and non-core assets. These assets are proposed to be sold over a period of time to take care of the liabilities that the government tookover. Given the massive losses, the airline kept borrowing, based on government guarantee, but the sale was unviable with this debt.
Aviation industry sources said apart from the practical difficulties in the sale of regional carrier Alliance Air, given that it alsohas sovereign guarantees and other links, there is greater interest in the two other subsidiaries, including from the Tatas.
The airline connects tier-2 and -3 cities and is a key player in the Centre’s UDAN or regional connectivity scheme. Air travel has rebounded sharply after the lifting of Covid curbs.
The global slowdown and uncertainty triggered by the war in Ukraine may not elicit robust response for Alliance Air, a reason which may have also prompted the government to proceed cautiously.

Source link

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

%d bloggers like this: