NEW DELHI : Three government-owned airlines, Air India Limited, Air India Express and Alliance Air reported a combined net loss of ₹7,403 crore during the March-December 2021 period, civil aviation minister Jyotiraditya Scindia said on Thursday, March 31.
Responding to a question from a member of parliament (MP) A Raja at the Lok Sabha, Scindia said that the aviation sector has been adversely affected due to the disruptions caused by the pandemic.
During the March-December 2021 period, while Air India Limited reported a net loss of ₹6,927 crores, Air India Express’s net loss stood at ₹161 crores, and Alliance Air losses were ₹315 crores.
While, Air India had reported losses of ₹9,373 crores in 2020-21, Alliance Air reported losses of ₹440 crore during the period. Air India Express reported a profit of ₹184 crore during 2020-21, according to data from the Ministry of Civil Aviation (MoCA).
In January, the government handed over Air India and Air India Express to the Tata Group following the completion of a successful divestment process. Alliance Air, a regional airline, is still being run by the government.
In a separate response at the Lok Sabha, the minister of state (civil aviation) VK Singh said that airline losses were nearly doubled from ₹10,212 crores in 2018-19 to ₹18,426 crores in 2020-21.
Singh also said that the escalation of aviation turbine fuel (ATF) due to the ongoing Ukraine conflict may further adversely impact the financials of airlines.
The cost of ATF has risen from ₹76.1 a litre on 1 January 2022 (at New Delhi) to ₹110.7 a litre on 16 March 2022, Singh added.
Singh also said that the aviation sector reported about job losses to the tune of 1.9 lakh, at about 10% of the then workforce, between 31 March 2020 and 31 December 2021.
“(The) Total number of airline employees in India has declined from around 74,800 as on 31 March 2020 to around 65,600 as on 31 December 2021. (Total number of employees in airport sector has declined from around 73,400 as on 31 March 2020 to around 65,700 as on 31 December 2021,” Singh said in a response to a question by MP Dibyendu Adhikari.
“(The) Total number of employees in (the) ground handling sector has declined from around 30,800 as on 31 March 2020 to around 27,600 as on 31 December 2021. Total number of employees in air cargo sector has increased from around 9,600 as on 31 March 2020 to around 10,500 as on 31 December 2021,” Singh added.