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SIA prepares for smooth take-off with Tata Sons
Lee Pei Qi, Singapore, November 13, 2013

SINGAPORE Airlines (SIA) is confident that its joint-venture carrier with Tata Sons will take off smoothly, as it prepares for the New Delhi-based, full-service airline to start operations mid-next year (TTG Asia e-Daily, September 20, 2013).


Following the verbal approval on October 24 by the Foreign Investment Promotion Board in India, Goh Choon Phong, CEO of SIA, said the carrier is now awaiting further official clearance.


Explaining that the new airline is SIA’s strategy in participating directly in a “huge growth market”, Goh said: “The choice of India is obvious due to its immense market potential with its increasing middle-class population. The number of trips per capita in India is still very low at 0.04, compared to China which is 0.3 and developed countries like the US and Europe at 2.


“This allows us to diversify our traffic base and not just depend on the Singapore base,” he added.  


“There are challenges (such as the competitive domestic market) and we are not taking them lightly. But we have the confidence to make this work otherwise we would not go in there.”


During a media briefing today, Goh also revealed SIA's operating profit of S$87 million (US$70 million) for the second quarter of the 2013-14 financial year, which was up by 24.3 per cent year-on-year. The group net profit for this period registered a 78 per cent increase to S$160 million.


In a separate media statement this morning, the carrier announced that travellers flying SIA and SilkAir will enjoy 10kg extra in baggage allowance across all classes from November 15. Economy customers will be entitled to 30kg of baggage, up from 20kg now, while business class passengers will be allowed 40kg from the current 30kg.


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