Business Companies 17 Apr 2019 Jet Airways finds no ...

Jet Airways finds no solace, lenders undecided on funding

FC INVESTIGATIVE BUREAU
Published Apr 17, 2019, 1:26 am IST
Updated Apr 17, 2019, 1:37 am IST
Sources said Jet Airways founder Naresh Goyal has decided not to bid for acquiring stake in the cash-strapped airline.
Naresh Goyal (Photo: AFP)
 Naresh Goyal (Photo: AFP)

Mumbai/New Delhi: The cash-strapped Jet Airways has struggled to stay afloat on Tuesday as it awaited badly needed "emergency liquidity support" from the SBI-led consortium of lenders.

The airline flew just five planes on Tuesday and the management made desperate attempts to garner emergency funds worth Rs 400 crore but the lenders remained undecided on extending the lifeline.

 

The over three-hour meeting of the airline's board in Mumbai remained inconclusive, but officials of banks and the government maintained that efforts are on to revive the carrier.

In a stock exchange filing, Jet Airways said, "The company's leadership, in consultation with its board of directors, is engaged with lenders in connection with the said emergency funding request... The company is also in constant engagement with the Directorate General of Civil Aviation and Ministry of Civil Aviation in this regard."

The filing was made in response to a clarification sought by the exchange regarding reports that the airline was likely to temporarily shut down its operations.

Sources said Jet Airways founder Naresh Goyal has decided not to bid for acquiring stake in the cash-strapped airline.

Civil Aviation Minister Suresh Prabhu asked the ministry's Secretary Pradeep Singh Kharola to conduct a review of matters related to the ill-fated airline and take necessary measures to ensure passenger rights and safety.

Besides asking the secretary to take necessary steps to protect passenger rights and safety, Prabhu has called for working with all stakeholders for their well being, just before the airline's board meeting held in Mumbai.

Separately, the civil aviation ministry would convene meetings of representatives of airlines and airports on April 18 to discuss capacity expansion, rising airfares and other issues.

Representatives of various lenders to Jet Airways are also understood to have discussed issues related to Jet Airways with Financial Services Secretary Rajiv Kumar.

Jet Airways management is reportedly awaiting clarity on receiving fresh funds from the lenders to decide on continuing g the operations.

A senior government official said that funding for Jet Airways from lenders is likely to come through.

DGCA monitoring fares

With aviation capacity down due to the ongoing Jet Airways crisis, DGCA sources said the aviation regulator is monitoring air fares---to prevent over-charging by other airlines---and that a few airlines had removed "higher fare buckets."

DGCA sources on Tuesday said, "DGCA monitors domestic airfares on daily basis, particularly on high density routes and the routes where alternate mode of transport is not available or is difficult. Based on the monitoring process, DGCA engages with airlines when the spurt in airfares is observed at any sector for appropriate action. Today again, DGCA had a meeting with airline representatives on the issue.”

The sources added: "Airlines representative also intimated DGCA that they have removed the few higher buckets from sale and are offering tickets to passengers in lower fare buckets.”

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