|18 September, 2019

India open to selling part of Air India to foreign airline -sources

Government will also likely invite preliminary bids for the carrier by Oct. 10

Image used for illustrative purpose only. An Air India aircraft takes off as an IndiGo Airlines aircraft waits for clearance at the Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel International Airport in Ahmedabad, India, July 7, 2017.

Image used for illustrative purpose only. An Air India aircraft takes off as an IndiGo Airlines aircraft waits for clearance at the Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel International Airport in Ahmedabad, India, July 7, 2017.

REUTERS/Amit Dave

NEW DELHI - India's government is open to selling a partial stake in debt-laden state-run carrier Air India to a foreign airline, people familiar with the matter said on Wednesday.

The government has moved about 300 billion rupees ($4.21 billion) of Air India's debt to a separate holding company, leaving the carrier with roughly another 300 billion rupees of debt, the people said.

The government will also likely invite preliminary bids for the carrier by Oct. 10, the sources added.

($1 = 71.1910 Indian rupees)

(Reporting by Aftab Ahmed in New Delhi; Writing by Sachin Ravikumar; editing by Uttaresh.V) ((saisachin.r@tr.com; +91 80 6749 7649; Twitter: @sachinr27;))

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