Extra capacity has fuelled growth at Jet Airways, particularly for premium products, senior vice president – cargo, Pradeep Kumar tells Air Cargo Week.
He says demand for worldwide airfreight continues to be “robust”, and Jet Airways has been feeling the affects in the first half with strong demand for capacity.
The momentum from the first half is expected to continue with Kumar commenting: “The domestic market is expected to grow by six per cent over last year and with the strong economic forecast, exports and imports to/from India are expected to grow by approximately 4.7 per cent over last year.”
He says Jet has been able to grow due to introducing wide body aircraft on both international and domestic routes, providing direct capacity between India and the Far East, the Gulf and Europe.
Kumar says: “Deployment of wide body capacity between metro cities within India has helped provide seamless connectivity and distribution for time definite cargo. Increased direct capacity has fuelled the growth in pharmaceuticals and perishables such as flowers and food items.”
Jet has been busy upgrading aircraft on routes to Amsterdam and Paris, and new routes from Bengaluru to Singapore, Bengaluru to Colombo and Delhi to Muscat.
Other services have been increased, including Delhi – Doha, Delhi – Dubai, and Mumbai – Kathmandu, as well as higher domestic network frequencies.
Other route upgrades include new Chennai – Paris, Bengaluru – Amsterdam services, a third Mumbai – London flight from 29 October, a second Delhi – Singapore service and using a Boeing 777 instead of an Airbus A330 on Mumbai – Paris flights.
The UK Brexit vote has not had an impact on business, and Kumar comments: “[The] UK continues to be a major trading partner of India and the new tax reforms undertaken by the government by the implementation of the Goods & Services Tax (GST) i.e. One nation One Tax, is expected to further fuel growth.”
India’s GDP is expected to grow by more than seven per cent this year, with exports increasing and a stronger domestic market.
Some things need to be improved including infrastructure, though there have been positive developments.
Kumar says: “Factors expected to facilitate growth and opportunities include continuing the progressive outlook of the Government supported by expedited clearances of infrastructure projects / industry and increased FDI inflows.”