AirAsia to form India budget carrier with Tata

Feb 20, 2013 (LBO) – Malaysia’s AirAsia said has sought approval from authorities in India to form a joint venture budget carrier with Tata group and another investor, Arun Bhatia of Telestra Tradeplace. AirAsia pulled out of Colombo this year.

“AirAsia is confident that it can replicate its unprecedented success across Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia and other joint ventures,” the airline said.

AirAsia operates 118 aircraft and has 350 more on order. India opened airlines to foreign investments last September. AirAsia, a point-to-point, carrier already has joint ventures in Thailand and Indonesia.

The India base airline will operate out of Chennai in the south Indian state of Tamil Nadu.

“We have carefully evaluated developments in India over the last few years and strongly believe that the current environment is perfect to introduce AirAsia’s low fares which stimulate travel¦,” Group chief executive Tony Fernandes said in a statement.

AirAsia Investment Ltd (AAIL) had applied to Foreign Investment Promotion Board to form the airline and the joint venture will later seek approval from aviation authorities.

AirAsia will have a 49 percent stake in the joint venture whi