Aviation industry Rs 11,658 cr loss in 2021-22

The country’s aviation industry has suffered a loss of Rs 11,658 crore in 2021-22, the government said.

According to the Civil Aviation Ministry, the details of losses incurred by the industry are: FY 2019-20 Rs 4,770 crore; FY 2020-21 Rs 12,479 crore; and FY 2021-22 Rs 11,658 crore.

The losses to the industry were primarily because of the Covid-induced disruption across the globe; currency depreciation (USD/INR); high operating cost environment, especially due to increase in ATF prices which constitute a major portion of the operational cost of airline; increase in crude oil prices in international market; VAT; excise duty; and the ongoing Ukraine-Russia war.

Airlines were unable to pass full impact of cost increases to the passenger, Union Civil Aviation Minister Jyotiraditya Scindia told the Lok Sabha in a written reply on Thursday.

The actual figure of profit/losses to the industry will be known only when the audited accounts are available at the end of the financial year 2022-23, the reply added.

The airlines and major airports are operated by the private sector and they evolve their own SOPs for cost minimisation and profitability.

However, the government has taken various steps to facilitate airlines. The UDAN Scheme is a game-changer for the aviation industry, the reply added.

The UDAN Scheme or Ude Desh Ka Aam Nagrik, is a regional connectivity scheme that seeks to make air travel accessible and affordable for the masses.

Scindia said that the enhanced fiscal support in the form of VGF (Viable Gap Funding), concession on fuel rates, landing/parking charges and the infrastructural development of un-served airports have not only boosted the operations of giant airline companies but has also lead to the participation of regional start-up airlines such as Star Air and IndiaOne Air, and Flybig which are operating exceptionally well.

Other measures taken by the Government included the reduction of VAT on Aviation Turbine Fuel (ATF) was taken up with state governments/union territories levying high VAT on ATF.

As a result 16 states have reduced the VAT in the range of 1-4 per cent.

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