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Turbulence in skies but confident to turn it around, says aviation minister Hardeep Singh Puri

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Union aviation minister Hardeep Singh Puri on Friday said that while there is turbulence in the skies, the government is confident that they can turn around the situation.

Turbulence in skies but confident to turn it around, says aviation minister Hardeep Singh Puri
In an indirect but clear reference to the interim suspension of operations at Jet Airways, union aviation minister Hardeep Singh Puri on Friday said that while there is turbulence in the skies, the government is confident that they can turn around the situation.
"I am going to avoid the name…when it ceased operations...today we have more planes flying in the domestic sector than we had at that point of time so if you look at the correction in the domestic market by the end of this month, we will have 580 planes flying up from 540-550 last month," Puri said.
"That carrier also had wide-bodied aircraft which were operating on long-haul routes and we are addressing that issue and I am confident that we can solve that problem, both in terms of domestic capacity...providing opportunities to domestic carriers and in terms of other actions we will take," Puri added without giving further details.
Addressing the Confederation of Indian Industry's National Council Meeting, Puri said the domestic aviation market is highly under-penetrated at just 7 percent and the government has every intention to exploit its full potential.
"We need to provide domestic airlines with a level playing field," Puri said.
Puri was answering queries on airlines' concerns about incurring high costs as 40 percent of their expenses are related to fuel only. Industry representatives requested the minister to bring aviation turbine fuel under the ambit of Goods and Services Tax (GST) regime.
After growing at the double-digit growth rate for 52 months, the domestic air passenger traffic growth started slowing down since January this year and fell by 4.5 percent on year in April, falling to its lowest point of six years.
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