New Delhi: Jet Airways India Ltd and Tata SIA Airlines Ltd run Vistara are expected to order about 200 planes over the coming weeks, aviation consulting firm CAPA said in its outlook on Tuesday.

Low-cost carriers account for 85% of India’s current order book of 880 aircraft, but in the coming  weeks, two of its full service airlines will add to the tally. 

"Jet Airways is expected to place an order for a further 100 narrow body aircraft – taking its total of the type to 175, while Vistara is likely to order 50 narrow-bodies and 50 wide-bodies," the CAPA Outlook 2017-18 said.

With these planned acquisitions, India’s order book will reach 1080 aircraft, the third largest in the world after the US and China. And its ratio of 2.2 aircraft on order for every aircraft in service would be the highest of any major aviation market. The order book is dominated by narrow body planes, which account for 85% of the total. There are only a limited number of wide body and regional aircraft in the pipeline, it said. Vistara, the report added, will  induct wide bodies once it becomes eligible to operate international services after reaching a domestic fleet size of 20 aircraft. 

Vistara's first international flight is expected to start in the winter of 2018.

For its 50 narrow body and 50 wide body order, Vistara is expected to opt either for a combination of A320s and A350s, or 737s and 777s. The carrier is reportedly interested in the 777X, but with the  first deliveries of the type not expected until 2020 and given current fuel prices, Vistara may alternatively consider the 777-300ER, it added.

Vistara may take wide bodies, including 787s, on short term lease from Singapore Airlines – a 49% shareholder in Vistara, CAPA said.

"Other carriers are responding by accelerating their own expansion in order to hold on to market share and to prevent IndiGo from securing a dominant position with over 50% of the market. As of April 2017, its share had already reached 41%," it added. Of the expected 1080 aircraft on order, more than 700 are scheduled for delivery within the next decade and 400 within the next five years. This excludes orders yet to be placed and equipment to be  taken on lease.

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