NEW DELHI: The Centre has to look to put in place certain systems to boost long-haul international flights of Indian carriers to places such as Europe and South America, Civil Aviation Minister Jyotiraditya Scindia said on Thursday.
“We have to aim to make India a robust aviation hub where we can fly more passengers from India to the world and vice versa,” he said during an event organised by the PHD Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
Scindia said connectivity to Europe, North America, Canada, Mexico, South America and parts of Central Asia has to be boosted using the hub-and-spoke model.
“Therefore, the creation of a hub in India is extremely important. Increasing long-haul flights means we have to get more wide-bodied aircraft,” he noted.
Increasing long-haul flights will be a challenge in the days to come but aviation hubs have to come back on our agenda as a country, a ministry and an industry, the minister mentioned.
Scheduled international passenger services have been suspended in India since March 23, 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic.
However, special flights have been operating since July last year under bilateral “air bubble” arrangements between India and approximately 28 countries.
On the one side, the country has to concentrate on the domestic travel side, while on the other, it also has to think about the international travel side, Scindia said.
“And we have to look at putting in place systems that allow connectivity on long-haul travel to places like Europe where we have just one or two (Indian) airlines catering to these destinations,” he added.