Istanbul: India’s budget carrier IndiGo has launched its flight on the Delhi-Istanbul sector and announced to use its expanding fleet of A320neo and A321neo aircraft to connect more Indian cities to countries such as China, Vietnam, England, Myanmar and Saudi Arabia.
William Boulter, Chief Commercial Officer of IndiGo said Wednesday here, “We are looking very seriously into other points in South East Asia, notably the obvious ones of Vietnam and Myanmar. We also want to operate shortly to Saudi Arabia on the west side”.
“We are seriously interested in getting in China as soon as we can. We are still selecting precise destinations,” he said.
“India operates only five flights from here to China per week, whereas China operates 42 flights to India per week. It’s basically time that we start readdressing that balance. I am convinced thatthere is a huge amount of traffic in India-China axis. We have not yet tapped that,” Boulter said.
The airline plans to add 125 A321neo aircraft in its fleet over number of years. In 2019, it will receive 20-25 of these aircraft from Airbus, he said.
India’s largest airline IndiGo has around 40 per cent domestic passenger market share.
Boulter said, “Once we get more A321s, we will do more longer routes.” A321neo aircraft has the capacity to carry around 230 passengers while A320 neo carries around 180 passengers.
While Delhi-Istanbul flight is being operated in A321neo aircraft having 222 seats, Boulter clarified that the flights to China would be based on A320neos.
Talking about IndiGo’s plan to connect Delhi to London, he said, “We are still hoping to operating to London this year. We haven’t chosen yet what the mid point is going to be whether Baku or Tsblisi or Istanbul.”
“We had some slots in Gatwick airport last winter but they have lapsed. So, we are again looking at which airport we can operate to in the UK. It’s not yet confirmed. We are very keen to get into the UK market this year.
“We also have a plan to put A321 aircraft domestically because in slot limited airports in Delhi and Mumbai and increasingly, other airports too, A321 gives you that additional capacity,” Boulter said.
The Delhi-Istanbul flight plans to connect 20 forward destinations using the codeshare pact that was signed between India’s largest airline and Turkish Airlines on December 21 last year. Codeshare pact allows passengers to travel on a single ticket on flights operated by the partner carrier.
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Boulter said that Delhi-Istanbul is a “strategic route” and the permission for six forward destinations have already been received by the respective countries’ governments.
“We have got six in place but we expect the others to be approved over the next few weeks. And they will be in your system for sales as IndiGo destinations.
“Once the Pakistan issues are gone away, which we hope they will, then this Delhi-Istanbul flight would be our longest flight operated by A321 aircraft,” he said.
US to eliminate Iran oil sanctions waiver for India, 7 others:Report
Washington: The United States is expected to announce that all importers of Iranian oil will have to end their imports shortly or be subject to US sanctions, a source familiar with the situation told Reuters.
The source confirmed a report by a Washington Post columnist that the administration will terminate the sanctions waivers it had granted to some importers of Iranian oil late last year.
US President Donald Trump has been clear to his national security team over the last few weeks that he wants the waivers to end, and national security adviser John Bolton has been working the issue within the administration.
The US reimposed sanctions in November on exports of Iranian oil after Trump unilaterally pulled out of a 2015 nuclear accord between Iran and six world powers Washington is pressuring Iran to curtail its nuclear program and stop backing militant proxies across the Middle East.
Along with sanctions, Washington has also granted waivers to eight economies that had reduced their purchases of Iranian oil, allowing them to continue buying it without incurring sanctions for six more months
They were China, India, Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, Turkey, Italy and Greece.
But on Monday, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo will announce “that, as of May 2, the State Department will no longer grant sanctions waivers to any country that is currently importing Iranian crude or condensate,” the Post’s columnist Josh Rogin said in his report, citing two State Department officials that he did not name
Frank Fannon, US Assistant Secretary of State for Energy Resources, repeated the administration’s position that “Our goal is to get to zero Iranian exports as quickly as possible.
“Other countries have been watching to see whether the United States would continue the waivers. Last Tuesday, Turkish presidential spokesman Ibrahim Kalin said that Turkey expects the United States to extend a waiver granted to Ankara to continue oil purchases from Iran without violating US sanctions.
Turkey did not support US sanctions policy on Iran and did not think it would yield the desired result, Kalin told reporters in Washington.
Washington has a campaign of ‘maximum economic pressure’ on Iran and through sanctions, it eventually aims to halt Iranian oil exports and thereby choke Tehran’s main source of revenue.
So far in April, Iranian exports were averaging below 1 million barrels per day (bpd), according to Refinitiv Eikon data and two other companies that track such exports and declined to be identified.
That is lower than at least 1.1 million bpd as estimated for March, and down from more than 2.5 million bpd before sanctions were reimposed last May. Brent crude futures , the international oil benchmark, were up nearly 2 per cent at USD 73.25 a barrel, on the report that the waivers were to end.
Maruti drives in Baleno with BS VI compliant petrol engine
New Delhi: The country’s largest carmaker Maruti Suzuki India (MSI) Said it has launched its premium hatchback Baleno with BS VI emission norms compliant petrol engine, priced between Rs 5.58 lakh and Rs 8.9 lakh (ex-showroom Delhi).
The auto major has also introduced two variants of the car with smart hybrid technology. The trim with 1.2 litre DUALJET, DUAL VVT petrol engine is priced at Rs 7.25 lakh, while the Zeta variant is tagged at Rs 7.86 lakh. As per the company, the models with smart hybrid technology would deliver a fuel efficiency of 23.87 km/litre.
“At Maruti Suzuki, we strive to bring newer, better and environment friendly technologies to our products. Baleno Smart Hybrid with BS VI stands testament to the same. We are confident that the premium hatchback Baleno will present a complete package in line with aspirations of evolving customers,” MSI Senior Executive Director Marketing & Sales R S Kalsi said in a statement.
The company said in order to achieve the stringent emission regulation requirement, it has upgraded both engine hardware and software along with exhaust system.”Baleno is country’s first premium hatchback to be offered with Smart Hybrid technology,” it added.
MSI has sold over 5.5 lakh Baleno units since its launch in 2015. It sold more than 2 lakh units of the hatchback in the last fiscal year.
SpiceJet, Emirates sign MoU for code share partnership
Mumbai: Budget carrier Spicejet announced signing of an initial pact for code share partnership with Gulf carrier Emirates.
The reciprocal partnership will allow opening of new routes and destinations for passengers of the two airlines, SpiceJet said in a statement.
“I am delighted to announce that as part of SpiceJet’s international expansion strategy, we have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for a code share agreement,” SpiceJet Chairman and Managing Director Ajay Singh said in the statement.
SpiceJet passengers from 51 domestic destinations will be able to access Emirates’ network across the US, Europe, Africa and Middle East, it added.
Code-sharing allows an airline to book its passengers on its partner carriers and provide seamless travel to destinations where it has no presence.