India Considers Reopening Skies for Commercial Flights Next Week
Grounded aircraft stand at Terminal 3 at the Indira Gandhi International Airport during a lockdown implemented due to the coronavirus in New Delhi, India. (Photographer: T. Narayan/Bloomberg)

India Considers Reopening Skies for Commercial Flights Next Week

(Bloomberg) -- India is considering allowing some domestic flights to resume on May 18 or earlier as the government looks to reopen a key part of the economy and provide relief to airlines, which haven’t been able to fly since March because of a nationwide lockdown, according to people familiar with the matter.

The Ministry of Civil Aviation is in talks with airlines, travel agents and the federal home ministry about the move, the people said, asking not to be identified because the deliberations aren’t public. A decision may come Monday, they said, adding that Prime Minister Narendra Modi is meeting with state chief ministers this afternoon.

The top bureaucrat in the aviation ministry didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.

Airlines in India have slashed salaries and furloughed staff as they try to weather the pandemic and its devastating impact on travel. The country is one of the world’s fastest-growing aviation markets and home to some of the biggest Airbus SE and Boeing Co. customers, including InterGlobe Aviation Ltd.’s IndiGo and SpiceJet Ltd.

©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

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