'Jet Airways open for alliance with Air India'
Outlining an ambitious route expansion agenda for Jet Airways, its chief Naresh Goyal on Sunday said his airline was open for an alliance with state-owned Air India to enhance the market share for Indian carriers from the prevailing 20 to 50 per cent in the next few years.
Noting that cooperative arrangements were needed to increase the market share of Indian carriers in terms of traffic in and out of the country, he told reporters that his company favoured such cooperation with Air India.
"We have agreed that the new merged Air India and Jet Airways must cooperate, not just go for alliances. Why can't we have an alliance within India," Goyal posed, adding that all sides would benefit from such an arrangement.
Air India has plans to join a major global alliance of airlines and has held advanced level talks with Star Alliance, which has Lufthansa and Singapore Airlines as partners among others.
Goyal was here for the rollout of Boeing's Dreamliner 787 for which Jet Airways has placed an order of ten planes which will start joining the fleet in 2011. In addition to these planes, Jet has also placed an order for 10 Boeing 777 (Long Range), with two of these planes joining the fleet this month.
Elaborating his route expansion plans, he said the B-777s would be put on the North America route starting out of Mumbai first via Jet's newly-created European hub in Brussels, Belgium.