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RAK Air ready to fly into India

P R Sanjai  |  Mumbai 

Signalling a stiff competition to Indian carriers, one more international carrier is eyeing Indian skies. The is planning to fly to
The yet-to-be launched carrier is currently in talks with Delhi-based low-cost carrier SpiceJet for a possible interline agreements.
"We will be launching our operations in the first quarter of 2007 with two Boeing 757-200 aircraft. We have applied for the rights to operate in Mumbai, New Delhi, Kochi, Thiruvananthapuram and Chennai," RAK Airways Chief Executive Officer said.
Romero was speaking on the sidelines of Low-Cost Airline Symposium organised by the Centre for Asia Pacific Aviation (CAPA). RAK, the name derived from Ras Al Khaimah, was formed in February as a private joint stock company.
Industry analysts said the domestic carriers will have a tough time as more airlines such as Nok Air and Air Asia are also planning to start services from India.
"While recently launched Jazeera Airways, Air Arabia and Ettihad Airways are operating in India from the Middle East, will have to wait to complete the mandatory five years of operation to fly overseas. This will adversely impact Indian carriers," they pointed out.
Romero said the airline will shortly secure regulatory approvals for flying into India, adding "we have already initiated necessary measures."
He said the airline would deploy aircraft with 200 seat capacity and would increase the capacity gradually.
"We are also discussing with SpiceJet and other domestic carriers for a possible interline agreement. We are scouting for an airline where we can share synergy in the commercial operations," he added.
He said the operations would be weekly service and would be upgraded into daily service as soon as it acquires aircraft on lease.
"The average flying time to India is only two and half hours. This will enable us to upgrade the service and increase aircraft utilisation," he added.

First Published: Mon, October 02 2006. 00:00 IST