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DGCA approves import of 470 aircraft by Air India and 500 planes by IndiGo

Photo for representation.

The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) has granted in-principle approval to Air India Ltd. and InterGlobe Aviation Ltd (IndiGo) for the import of 470 and 500 aircraft respectively, Minister of State for Civil Aviation Gen. V. K. Singh (Retd) stated in a written reply to a question in the Rajya Sabha today.

As per the induction plan of the airlines, the aircraft are proposed to be imported during 2023-2035. The airline operators have been advised by DGCA to share their induction plan with airport operators for ensuring availability of parking slots, the minister further stated.

 The statement reveals that aircraft approved for import by DGCA for Air India include 210 A320 Neo planes, 40 A350 aircraft, 140 Boeing 737 aircraft and 10 B777-9 planes.  In the case of IndiGo the entire lot of 500 planes belong to the A320 family.

While IndiGo is importing only Airbus planes, Air India is buying aircraft from both European aerospace giant Airbus and US manufactured Boeing planes.

Information with respect to the cost of acquisition of these aircraft, being of commercial nature between the airline and the Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) is not available, the minister’s statement added.

According to experts, the IndiGo order for 500 planes could be valued at $50 billion going by the list price of the Airbus 320 Neo. However, huge discounts are also offered on such large orders so it is difficult to guess the exact estimate.

The IndiGo deal with Airbus which was clinched at the Paris airshow in June this year had scripted history as the largest ever number of jets bought by a single airline.

The multibillion-dollar deal had eclipsed Air India’s combined purchase of 470 jets earlier this year as India’s two largest airlines are going in for a rapid expansion to meet the fast growing demand for air travel in the country.

The Indian economy is considered as one of the bright spots has it has been able to maintain its growth trajectory even as other economies worldwide have slowed.

Both US multinational Boeing and Airbus are locked in a fierce market rivalry. Airbus appears to be having the edge in the number of planes ordered by India’s commercial airlines.