It’s official: Jet Airways not to take part in Air India divestment

Our Bureau | | Updated on: Dec 06, 2021

Jet Airways has decided not to participate in Air India’s divestment. Jet is the second Indian carrier after IndiGo to officially say so.

“We welcome the Government’s move to privatise Air India. It is a bold step. However, considering the terms of offer in the information memorandum and based on our review, we are not participating in the process,” Amit Agarwal, Deputy Chief Executive Officer and Chief Financial Officer, Jet Airways, said in a statement.

The airline declined to give details of the specifics terms of offer it found unviable for it to participate in the bidding process.

While Jet Airways had never officially said it was interested in picking up a stake in Air India, there were reports that it was forming an alliance with the Air France-KLM Group to participate in the bidding process.

Last Thursday, Delhi-based low-cost airline IndiGo had decided to pull out of bidding for Air India.

Industry watchers say that the fact that the government plans to retain a 24 per cent stake in Air India after the divestment process is completed is acting as a dampener for potential investors. Besides, the industry has also expressed disappointment that the Preliminary Information Memorandum (PIM) gives about 45 days to seal the shareholding pattern.

Some feel that the decision to set the net worth criterion of ₹5,000 crore for a bidding party is too high. In another criticism, many are upset at the speed at which the government is trying to complete the divestment process so as to show the people that this government means business before the 2019 general elections.

The government issued the PIM on March 28 and set April 16 as the last date for submission of written queries by interested parties.

May 14 has been set as the last date for submitting Expression of Interest in the bidding of Air India and the government hopes to announce the successful winner on May 28.

Published on April 10, 2018
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