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Business News/ Industry / Around 200 aircraft likely to be grounded by March: Capa India
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Around 200 aircraft likely to be grounded by March: Capa India

The grounded fleet is likely to include more than 90 aircraft of IndiGo, followed by 25-30 aircraft each of the Tata Group-backed Air India and low-cost carrier SpiceJet

Overall, the sector is likely to have a fleet size of close to 790 aircraft by March 2024, of which 588 aircraft are likely to be operational,. (Photo by Satyabrata Tripathy/Hindustan Times)Premium
Overall, the sector is likely to have a fleet size of close to 790 aircraft by March 2024, of which 588 aircraft are likely to be operational,. (Photo by Satyabrata Tripathy/Hindustan Times)

New Delhi: The Indian aviation industry may see 200 grounded aircraft by the end of this financial year, aviation consultancy firm Capa India has said in its mid-year outlook.

The grounded fleet is likely to include more than 90 aircraft of India's largest airline IndiGo, followed by 25-30 aircraft each of the Tata Group-backed Air India and low-cost carrier SpiceJet. In addition, 54 aircraft of Go First have been grounded since the airline suspended flights in May.

Currently, over 160 aircraft across Indian airlines are grounded. The grounded fleet size is expected to increase due to IndiGo, which currently has 55 aircraft on the ground, according to CAPA.

Overall, the sector is likely to have a fleet size of close to 790 aircraft by March 2024, of which 588 aircraft are likely to be operational, the aviation research firm said. Further, CAPA India also foresees delays in aircraft deliveries for India's youngest airline Akasa Air.

In terms of the total number of flyers, the domestic and international passenger traffic for the current financial year are expected to be around 155 million and 70 million passengers respectively. As per the Airports Authority of India and Directorate General of Civil Aviation, Indian airports registered 57 million international passengers and the domestic air passenger traffic stood at 136 million passengers in 2022-23 (Apr-Mar).

"Supply chain issues are now a critical risk, and could have a deeper and more strategic impact than anticipated. This could for example impact the ability of mainline scheduled airlines to operate the UDAN flight," Capa India said.

In fact, the wet lease aircraft fleet in India could be around 30 by March as IndiGo and SpiceJet are inducting capacity on this model whereby an aircraft is leased along with crew.

In terms of airfares, the research firm has noted the return of normalcy despite a shortage in capacity. Average fares declined by 12.7% on year in September quarter and while some weakness is expected in the March quarter, full-year yields are likely to be around 3% lower on year. Softer yields are expected to result in higher losses for full-service carriers such as Air India and Vistara than the earlier projected levels.

"Growth momentum in the market will continue. International operations are coming into greater focus and will receive an increasing share of planned capacity," Capa India noted.

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Published: 27 Nov 2023, 08:32 PM IST
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