Two percent interest subsidy sought for small aircraft acquisition

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New Delhi, Feb 18 (IANS) Industry body PHD Chamber of Commerce and Industry on Thursday demanded the civil aviation ministry to offer two percent interest subsidy for small aircraft acquisition to improve regional connectivity.

“Entrepreneurs cannot generate such an amount from their internal accruals, therefore, the civil aviation ministry should evolve a formula seeking two percent interest subvention for the purpose,” said the chamber’s civil aviation committee chairman K. Narayana Rao at PHD Aviation Summit-2016.

He highlighted civil aviation entrepreneurs need Rs.100 crore financial assistance to acquire small aircraft for developing regional connectivity.

According to the chamber, government should not take the trouble of acquiring small aircraft as the sector is stressed and therefore orgnise interest subsidy to entrepreneurs before the budget roll out for fiscal 2016-17.

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Civil Aviation Minister Ashok Gajapathi Raju, who attended the summit, did not comment on the proposal but said India needs to correct its weaknesses.

“As it (India) is one of the few countries in the world that has such diversities and thus, efforts should be mounted to realize its potential in all segments of Indian economy including that of civil aviation,” he said.

The chamber said air connectivity to remote and regional places results in balanced development with effective flow of tangible benefits goods and services and intangible benefits culture and information.

“Estimates reveal that Rs. 1 spent on air transport contributes as much as Rs.3.25 to the economy and every job in aviation results in 6.10 jobs in the economy overall,” it said in a statement.

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Addressing the summit, Turkish Ambassador to India Burak Akcapar said air linkages between India and Turkey should grow further intensifying cargo and passenger movement between the nations.

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