India plans to manufacture own commercial aircraft
India's National Aerospace Laboratories (NAL) stated it plans to commence manufacturing its own commercial aircraft (Economic Times, 10-Feb-2011). The company plans to present a detailed report to the government within three months seeking clearance to manufacture a 90-seat passenger aircraft. NAL Director AR Upadhaya commented: "There is potential for short-distance, low-cost carriers as operators are looking for cost-effective and right-sized aircraft, while passengers want lower air fares. The proposed 90-seat civil aircraft can make this happen." The planned aircraft would be ready for commercial operation by 2017 if cleared for production. The company stated a number of international aerospace companies were interested in becoming partners in the INR50 billion (USD1 billion) project.