With just 48 hours before Jet Airways’ Expression of Interest application goes live, the Committee of Creditors said that it is optimistic about finding a resolution for the embittered airline, a media report said. The CoC is also expecting 3-4 interested bidders to come forward, as it invites applications on 20 July 2019, ET Now reported citing sources. The Naresh Goyal-founded airline still has its slots which could prove to be the most valuable asset for creditors.
While the DGCA had allotted the airline’s slots to rival domestic airlines, it had ensured creditors that those will be temporary in nature and Jet Airways can lay claim to them whenever it revives. The Ministry of Civil Aviation is keen on protecting Jet Airways slots and the Resolution Professional Ashish Chhawchharia, partner at Grant Thornton, will submit the slot details in a week, the report added.
In the course of a couple of months since Jet Airways grounding, some investors including Etihad Airways and Hinduja Group have shown interest in the beleaguered airline. Talks were also there that Mukesh Ambani’s Reliance Group could potentially float the airline. However, none of that has materialised yet. In June 2019, the airline was dragged to NCLT by a consortium of lenders led by The State Bank of India as no resolution plan surfaced even after months.
Meanwhile, Minister of Civil Aviation Hardeep Singh Puri recently said that the failure of Jet Airways cannot be pinned onto the government as the private sector needs to draw their business plan themselves. He added that it is not in the government’s capacity to call out people on their series of bad decisions.
The Indian aviation sector was severely hit with Jet Airways’ temporary suspension of operations right after it saw the grounding of Boeing 737 MAX Dreamliner. Jet Airways suspended its operations on 17 April 2019 after months of struggling afloat. Naresh Goyal-airline owes thousands of crores worth of dues to lenders, employees and vendors.
Source: Financial Express, July 19, 2019