Deora to meet Patel, oil cos, airlines over fuel bills

Deora to meet Patel, oil cos, airlines over fuel bills

New Delhi: Concerned over the default in payment of fuel bills by the airlines, Petroleum Minister Murli Deora has called a meeting on Wednesday with Civil Aviation Minister Praful Patel, airlines and oil companies to sort out the issue.

“We are trying to help them...We don’t want airlines to shut down operation," Deora told reporters here.

He said the airlines as well as the oil companies were facing credit crunch and a way needs to be found out to ease their liquidity problems.

Jet Airways, Kingfisher and Nacil, which operates Air India, owe over Rs2,000 crore to the oil PSUs in unpaid fuel bills, Deora said.

“There have been instances where airlines have defaulted in payment of bills even after expiry of 60 days credit period," he said.

Reeling under the pressure of surging fuel prices, the Indian civil aviation sector is seeking tax concessions on aviation turbine fuel.

On Monday, Jet Airways chief Naresh Goyal met Finance Minister P Chidambaram to draw his attention to the problems that airlines in the country were facing.

Goyal is understood to have asked Chidambaram to consider the demand of airlines to rationalise taxation and levies on ATF.