Air India estimated that it will fully resume normal operations by mid-week (AP/Times of India). Some 600 of the 810 striking pilots had reported back for duty, according to the Indian Commercial Pilots Association (ICPA), with the others requiring medical checks and licence renewal before they are approved to fly again. The airline is expected to operate 160 domestic and regional services on 08-May-2011.
Air India operations expected to be normal by mid-week
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Australia-India air travel market grows rapidly but SE Asian hubs hinder nonstop services
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Air India launched services to Melbourne and Sydney in 2013 but the Australia-India market is still dominated by Southeast Asian flag carriers. Singapore Airlines has been able to maintain a leading 41% share of the market. Malaysia Airlines also still carries more Australia-India passengers than Air India.
Attracting more nonstop flights from Air India, or the possible launch of nonstop flights to India by Australian carriers, will not be easy despite growing demand. Southeast Asia’s network airlines have a competitive advantage as they serve several gateways in both Australia and India. Southeast Asia’s growing medium/long haul LCCs have also started to compete in the Australia-India market and are well positioned to take a large share of the anticipated growth.
India’s aviation market surges 20% on economic growth and low fuel prices
Indian aviation is, after many years of promise, seemingly starting to deliver on its potential. It is currently the fastest-growing major aviation market in the world. With strong GDP growth of around 7.5% India is surging ahead of China in the economic growth stakes.
Meanwhile, the decline in oil prices has supported lower fares, driving year-on-year domestic traffic growth in excess of 20%. Its airlines are even starting to make money.
LCC, IndiGo, established less than a decade ago, has become the dominant player in the domestic industry. At the end of the Indian financial year, on 31-Mar-2016, IndiGo was the largest airline in the domestic market with a passenger share of 38.4%, followed by Jet Airways at 20.2%. LCCs accounted for 61.7% of domestic traffic.