Minister lauds Pawan Hans role
By Sushma Arora
DELHI, June 29: The Civil Aviation Minister, Mr Praful Patel,
has appreciated Pawan Hans for making all out efforts for providing
connectivity to vital installations and remote inaccessible
areas of the country under hostile conditions. The new Minister
said this while visiting the Pawan Hans premises. The Pawan
Hans CMD, Mr Nagar V Sridhar, gave a presentation on the operations
and activities of the public sector company.
Minister took keen interest in understanding the role being
played by Pawan Hans. Mr Praful Patel mentioned that the direction
set by Pawan Hans was right and wished the company to fly even
highter. Pawan Hans Helicopters Ltd (PHHL) is one of India's
leading helicopter company and is known for its reliable helicopter
operations. The company was incorporated in 1985 with the objective
of providing helicopter services to the petroleum sector, linking
inaccessible areas of the country and operating charters for
promotion of tourism.
rules the skies too
By Deepak Arora
Aviation Service is not only the largest aviation fuel marketer
in the country but also the most preferred supplier of jet fuel
for customers in India and abroad. With over 94 Aviation Fuel
Stations spread across the Indian sub continent, IndianOil Aviation
Service serves over 71 international airlines besides the domestic
airlines in India.
IndianOil continued to rule the skies in aviation fuel supply
business with a market share of 67 per cent.
Thiruvananthapuram in the South to Leh in the North and from
Porbandar in the West to Ziro in the East, IndianOil Aviation
Service covers India like no one else. In fact, every 1.6 minutes
IndianOil Aviation Service somewhere in the country is refueling
N G Kannan, Director (Marketing), IndianOil says, " The
IndianOil Aviation Service is an operational service that just
never sleeps. Refueling continue round the clock despite bandhs,
strikes and natural calamities. Our Aviation Service stations
are not only windows to IndianOil but also the crucial supply
link that the aviation sector can simply take for granted".
Dr Kannan said IndianOil Aviation Service has over 68 per cent
of the aviation fuel market in the country. It also caters to
over 90 per cent demand of the Indian Defence services, besides
the sensitive requirements of VVIP flights at all the airports
and at remote heli-pads/ heli-bases across the Indian subcontinent.
Aviation Service not only maintains world-class standards in
operations and safety but also conforms to the stringent global
quality requirements of Aviation Fuel storage and handling.
It uses the latest technology and equipment to offer high quality
service to all its customers. In India, IndianOil was the first
in the oil industry to receive the ISO-9002 certification for
its Aviation Service.
IndianOil has earned this accreditation for thirteen major aviation
fuel stations including all international airports. Eleven of
the fourteen quality control laboratories have also earned this
IndianOil is also the first in India to have adopted a Quality
Control Index System based on a quality audit. Fourteen DGCA
approved IndianOil laboratories spread across the country carry
out full specification tests for Aviation Fuels.
policy of equal opportunity is well displayed by the gender
equality at the work place. At Juhu airport, Mumbai, its Aviation
Fuel facility catering for supplies to aircraft operating on
high sea operation of oil exploration, is entirely serviced
by women officers, said Dr Kannan.
IndianOil organizes an International Aviation conference at
select cities. Over 100 delegates from over 35 countries representing
leading international and all domestic airlines, allied industries,
statutory aviation authorities and government agencies including
representatives from the Indian Defence Services regularly attend
the two-day conference. This
prestigious conference has been organized annually by IndianOil
for the last 12 years and delves on the significant changes
in the aviation sector worldwide, as well as track the growth
trends in the Indian aviation industry.
the past, the conference has deliberated on issues like air
safety, conservation of air fuels, upgradation of fuel quality,
aviation fuel specifications, airport infrastructure, futuristic
engine design, air navigation systems and Aviation infrastructure.
The observers from the aviation industry tracking the latest
developments and happenings in the sector keenly watch the presentations
at the conference. The International Aviation Conferences have
been held in the past at Kathmandu, Bangalore, Khajuraho, Goa,
Agra and Jaipur. During 2003, Kochi hosted this prestigious
had the privilege to be the chosen one to refuel the flights
operated by the US Air Force, flying into and out of India during
the visit of the then US President Bill Clinton. IndianOil Aviation
Service ensured that US Pilots experienced in India the same
standards of service that they expect in the USA.
Aviation Service recently launched an interactive website www.ioclebiz.com
that helps customers to log on and do business from anywhere
in the world. The website caters to a wide range of services
and information like aviation fuel characteristics; latest quality/
safety measures; aviation fuel station network and location
details; and placement of orders and availability of fuel and
aviation lubricants at locations.
site also provides a historical background of the development
of aviation fuels, DGCA fuel specifications, test methods, QC
and safety procedures. Users accessing the site can register
providing the relevant information through pull down menus.
Other than regular contracted customers, casual customer planning
to operate flights can key in their requests and quotations.
IA set to regain past glory under Praful
back the past glory of Air India and Indian Airlines, modernization
of airports and a comprehensive civil aviation policy are some
of urgent tasks the new Civil Aviation Minister, Mr Praful Patel,
has set out for his innings at the Rajiv Gandhi Bhavan.
Mr Patel has been a member of the Parliamentary Consultative
Committee on Civil Aviation for the past 14 years and has a
fair idea of the problems and issues before the Ministry, he
wants to hear all views before he announces major policy decisions.
out the privatization of Indian Airlines and Air India, the
young and dynamic Minister said he would strengthen the two
public sector airlines to help them regain past glory. "They
are the pride of India and I am committed to ensuring that they
regain the past glory."
Patel said "selling everything is not the answer. I will
provide full support to the state-owned airlines. For more than
a decade, neither of the two carriers has been allowed to purchase
new aircraft. The two flag carriers will be allowed to purchase
new aircraft to augment the fleet which is necessary for the
growth of an airline."
Minister's words have come as music to the management, staff
and supporters of the national flag carriers. It is a known
fact that both Air India and Indian Airlines have all the qualities,
skills, expertise, capabilities and necessary infrastructure
to become the top-notch carriers of the world. What is required
is to give the airlines necessary autonomy in management to
take the flag carriers to newer heights. Mr Patel realizes this
and, therefore, is keen to give them a fair chance.
may be mentioned that fleet acquisition plans of Air India and
Indian Airlines have been pending with the previous governments
for the past several years. Though all the three Civil Aviation
Ministers of the last NDA Government promised to take a "quick"
decision on this issue, but they dithered over it.
November, Air India Board had given a nod to acquire 28 aircraft
worth Rs 10,000 crore. The airline would acquire 10 long-range
and 18 short-range aircraft. The long-range aircraft are Airbus
340 while the short-haul are Boeing 737-800.
new planes will allow Air India to reach more destinations in
Europe and the US, while touching more bases in India. Medium-capacity
long-range planes can seat more than 250 people and would be
used on the sectors in the US, Europe and the Far East. Small
capacity, short-range planes can carry 160 and would fly to
the Gulf and destinations in Southeast Asia.
March 2002, Boeing lost Rs 10,000 crore deal of Indian Airlines
to its European rival. Though the Board of state-run Indian
Airlines' board chose to buy a mix of 43 Airbus A319s, A320s
and A321 planes, the Government is yet to give its approval.
Air India and Indian Airlines have in the past few years increased
capacity by leasing aircraft. However, the core fleet of any
airline worldwide is its own aircraft. Only a small size is
taken as lease to take care of market fluctuations and is, therefore,
considered as a short-term solution. Lease can never replace
aircraft purchase option.
fleet constraints have hurt the market share of Air India and
Indian Airlines over the years. On the other hand, private carriers,
Jet Airways and Air Sahara, are expanding their fleet at regular
intervals and have been making dent in the market. The private
carriers are able to easily expand their fleet, as they have
no governmental controls.
strengthening the two flag carriers, Mr Patel assured of a healthy
competition between the public and private sector airlines.
On the issue of allowing private airlines, now operating to
SAARC countries, to fly to other foreign destinations, he said,
"the first preference would be give to Air India and Indian
Airlines. If the public sector airlines are not able to meet
the commitments then we can think about allowing private airlines
to fly to those sectors."
Patel assured that a comprehensive civil aviation policy would
be announced in the next three months. "Each Minister of
the NDA government had his own draft of the policy. Towards
the fag end of its life, the Vajpayee government had set up
Naresh Chandra Committee to give inputs for the aviation policy."
Mr Patel said he would like to go through all these reports
and get views from all before he finalises the new policy.
Patel also assured of bringing efficiency, transparency and
delivery to the Ministry. Keeping the Common Minimum Programme
(CMP) of the United Progressive Alliance (UPA), the Minister
said "the process of restructuring of Mumbai and Delhi
airports is on. But it should not be confused with privatization."
to make India as cargo hub
AAI Chairman, Mr K Ramalingam, is keen to promote cargo trade
activities. In this direction, he plans to bring more automation,
provide state-of-the-art facilities, expand and restructure
present cargo services and set up new cargo terminals to bring
India at par with international standards. Mr Ramalingam, who
took over as Chairman on March 11 this year, said further automation
would come in the form of Elevated Transfer Vehicles (ETVs)
and other mechanical handling equipment and introduction of
Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) and bar code systems.
Chairman stated that cargo revenue is one of the major sources
of non-traffic revenue for AAI and comprises 20 to 30 per cent
of its total revenue. Cargo revenue has increased at an average
of 18 per cent annually over the past 20 years (1982-83 to 2002-03).
In the year 1997-98, there was 0.47-percentage growth in cargo
traffic and 10.63 per cent growth in cargo revenue at the four
international airports - Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai and Kolkatta.
In the same financial year, the cargo export was 293146 million
tonnes and import was 141176 million tones and the total cargo
handling was 434322 million tones.
in 1998-99 there was negative growth of 4.14 per cent in cargo
traffic that jumped to 12.88 per cent in 1999-2000. In the year
2000-01 there was a growth of 4.63 per cent. In the following
year it declined to minus 0.68 per cent but there was a positive
growth of 13.72 per cent in 2002-03. There was a big jump of
78.24 per cent in cargo revenue in 1998-99. But it continued
to slide down in the next three financial years. However, the
cargo revenue increased by 8.21 per cent in 2002-03.
the year 2003-04, the expected cargo traffic would be 1044000
million tonnes that would results in growth of 6.7 per cent.
The projected cargo traffic in 2008-09 would be 1444000 million
tonnes at a growth rate of 6.7 per cent. Mr Ramalingam stated
that there was a need to make India as a cargo hub. He said
that at present both Delhi and Mumbai were annually handling
300,000 million tonnes of cargo each. In comparison, the bigger
airports like Memphis and Hong Kong were handling 25 to 35 lakh
million tonnes annually. "There is a need to for doing
cargo trade promotion activity that will naturally bring a boom
to this industry," he added.
Chairman said the geographical location of India between East
and West makes Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai and Kolkata as possible
hubs. He said our cargo terminals have recorded negligible cases
of theft and pilferage and the customer satisfaction idex has
gone up from 61 per cent to 76 per cent. He informed that the
Chennai, Mumbai and Kolkata airports have received ISO 9000
he said AAI is providing cargo handling and processing facilities
within the periphery of cargo terminals. AAI is considering
providing other related services like transportation of cargo
from cargo terminal to aircraft and vice versa and loading and
unloading of cargo in the aircraft.
Chairman said AAI is contemplating to set up a subsidiary company
for ground handling services as planned by the government. It
is also contemplating ramp-handling services for all cargo aircraft
on the concept of a single agency. This has been done in other
international airports of the world like Frankfurt, SATS at
Singapore, HACTL at Hong Kong, and Dnata at Dubai.
the future plans, Mr Ramalingam said an integrated cargo terminal
is under process of construction along with creation of center
of perishable cargo for processing of perishable cargo at Kolkata
airport at a cost of Rs 49 crore. At Mumbai, he said relocation
of FACT warehouse and establishment of courier terminal is under
process. At Chennai, intergrated cargo terminal (Phase II) is
at planning stage.
the future plans at domestic airports, he said construction
of air cargo complex at Amrtisar airport is nearing completion
and Jammu is awaiting customs clearance. A joint venture with
Bihar State Export Corporation Ltd has been formed for setting
up a perishable cargo complex at Patna.
Ramalingam said a cargo complex was set up at Coimbatore in
2001 by modifying the existing facilities. However, it has shown
encouraging trends in volume of traffic and now the AAI plans
to set a new integrated cargo terminal at a cost of Rs 4.5 crore.
He said the Government has taken several steps to improve the
security at the cargo terminals. Keeping in view the 9/11 incident,
positioning of CISF at all the airports including perimeter
security of cargo terminals is in progress.
order to safeguard the airport, aircraft and passengers, 100
per cent X-ray cargo, courier and baggage is being implemented
from January 1, 2004. For this purpose, AAI has procured adequate
number of state-of-the-art colour X-ray machines to install
these at the airports.As
part of internal security of cargo terminals, Close circuit
televisions (CCTVs), Palm readers, public announce systems as
well as frisking of personnel's have been re-strengthened.
the EDI, he said Electronic Data Interchange under the first
phase between Customs and AAI to facilitate Import and Export
transactions electronically has been established at the four
Implementation of EDI under the second phase between AAI and
other trade partners ie airlines, banks and agencies are in
advance stage and is likely to be implemented shortly.
system of Bar Code would be implemented in the third phase for
automatic data capturing. Target date of implementation is August
this year. The Bar Codes is part of the overall Integrated Cargo
Management Systems (ICMS). Bar code system would help locate
and retrieve information on moving cargo products at the click
of a button.
the past few years, he said the AAI has taken several steps
to augment and improve cargo infrastructure. In October last
year at Delhi airport, the space has been allotted to DHL and
EICI to operate the dedicated Courier Terminal for its own use
and for the common use of small operators. At Chennai airport,
an integrated cargo terminal (Phase I) for processing of export
cargo with a built up area of 10,000 sq mtrs has been established
in September 2002.
he said AAI has been operating parallel cargo terminal at Mumbai
airport from November, 2002. In November 2001, a built up area
of 14,000 sq mtrs has been added for storage and processing
of import at Delhi airport cargo terminal. Mr Ramalingam said
state of art center for perishable cargo centers have been established
at Delhi, Chennai and Mumbai airports in 1998, 1999 and 2003
Ramalingam, who took over as the Chairman on March 11, is a
Master degree holder in Electronic Engineering from IIT Chennai
and MBA from AIMA, Delhi. He started his career with the Civil
Aviation Department, Government of India, in June 1972. Later
with the formation of National Airports Authority in June 1986,
he was absorbed and posted as Deputy Director (Communications)
at the Headquarters.
then, Mr Ramalingam has not looked back. His sincerity, intelligence
and hard work have made him climb ladders of success at regular
intervals. He has held various senior level positions including
the Regional Director, Souther Region; Regional Executive Director,
Northern Region and Regional Executive Director, North Eastern
acknowledged expert in the field of Communication, Navigation
and Surveillance (CNS), Mr Ramalingam is on the panel of Global
Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) of ICAO for preparation of
standards and recommended practices. He is also a member of
Project Management Council for implementation of Satellite Based
Augmentation System (SBAS) in India named Gagan as a joint venture
project of ISRO and AAI.
shows the way for greenfield airport
a historic step, the Government of India has signed a concession
agreement with Bangalore International Airport Ltd (BIAL) for
setting up the first-ever greenfield airport in the country.
Greenfield airports have been conceptualized to bridge the huge
resource gap and to increase the management and efficiency levels
to world-class standards.
airport would be constructed through private-public partnership,
with the joint venture company comprising Karnataka State Investment
and Industries Development Corporation (KSIDC) and Airports
Authority of India (AAI) as well as a consortium of Siemens
(Germany), Unique Zurich (Switzerland) and Larsen and Toubro
(India). The new airport would come up at Devanahalli in Karnataka
in three years time.
KSIIDC and AAI would hold 26 per cent equity in the joint venture
firm BIAL, the private consortium would hold the remaining 74
per cent. The total project cost of building the plush airport
is estimated to be Rs 1,300 crore.
Aviation Secretary Ajay Prasad, BIAL chief W Bischoff and Karnataka's
additional chief secretary S Krishnakumar signed the concession
agreement in New Delhi on July 5 in the presence of Union Civil
Aviation Minister Praful Patel, Karnataka Chief Minister Dharam
Singh and his Deputy Siddaramaiah.
new Bangalore airport would be constructed on a build, own,
operate and transfer basis. The old Bangalore airport, operated
by the Indian Air Force and the Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd (HAL),
would be closed down to civilian traffic after completion of
the new airport, as per a recent decision of the Union Cabinet.
The airport would accommodate a minimum of 20 aircraft of different
types and have an ultimate capacity of catering to 40 million
passengers, with the initial phase planned for a capacity of
on the occasion, Mr Praful Patel said that the Aviation sector
should not be restricted only to flying planes but also to developing
the infrastructure facilities including airports of world class
standard. He said that the Bangalore International Airport would
usher in a new era in the field of Civil Aviation.
Patel said another greenfield airport would shortly come up
at Hyderabad and give "tough competition" to the proposed
airport at Devanahalli. "Such a competition will usher
in a new era in airport development as also the civil aviation
sector in the country."
Minister lamented that in a country like India with more than
a billion people, there were just 150 planes in all. In the
US, he said, one can find so many planes at a small airport.
Time has now come, he said, when the civil aviation sector should
act as the catalyst for growth by increasing the number of aircrafts,
the number of people who fly and developing infrastructure of
that it was "not a happy sight" for foreign travellers
to land at Indian airports, Mr Patel said the modernistion and
restructuring of Delhi and Mumbai airports would be given the
"highest priority" as also the development of infrastructure
at other airports in the country.
urged all States in the country to reduce sales tax on aviation
turbine fuel (ATF), which eats into the revenues of the airlines.
"The high cost of ATF is largely due to the state sales
tax. I urge all state governments to loosen a little bit on
the sales tax in order to gain a high volume of air traffic
and income. More revenue could be earned from areas like trade,
commerce and tourism if the aviation sector flourished,"
on the occasion, Karnataka Chief Minister Dharam Singh said
with the signing of the agreement, over 10 years of efforts
by the state government had fructified. "It marks a new
development in India's infrastructure by combining private sector
expertise and state capacity." The Karnataka government
has provided Rs 350 crore soft loan to BIAL and would provide
budgetary support of Rs 400 crore.
concession agreement is a complex document, which has been finalised
after numerous meetings between the Ministries of Civil Aviation,
Law & Justice, Finance, Law, Government of Karnataka and
the BIAL. The agreement provides for Rights and Obligations
of Government of India (GOI) and BIAL. The agreement provides
for Rights and Obligations of GOI and BIAL, Operation and Maintenance
Standards including monitoring thereof Airport Charges, Provision
of Reserved Activities like Customs, Immigration, Security,
Liabilities and Indemnities and Resolution Mechanism for Disputes,
Central Government has agreed to grant concession to BIAL to
design, develop, finance, construct, commission, maintain, operate
and manage the airport. Karnataka is providing 4300 acres of
land for this purpose.
proposed airport at Bangalore will have a runway designed to
accept Boeing - 747 type of aircraft, having a length of 4000m
and PCN 80. The Apron will be adequate enough to accommodate
a mix of minimum 20 aircraft. The terminal building with an
air-conditioned built up area of 55850 sq meter shall provide
all modern facilities. All the facilities have been so designed
that the modular expansion shall be possible to meet the growing
demand without compromising on the quality of service.
following international trends, Air-India wants to be a part
of the modernisation and privatisation of the Mumbai and Delhi
airports. That is, it wants to own at least one terminal in
each airport. "We want to own at least one terminal in
the Mumbai and Delhi airports. We want do this by becoming a
part of the modernisation project," according to Mr V Thulsidas,
chairman and managing director, Air-India.
move by the national carrier follows the government's decision
to free Delhi and Mumbai airports -- the two largest airports
in the country -- from the complete control of the Airports
Authority of India and allow the private sector, public sector
undertakings and domestic airlines to be part owners of the
the present policy, private companies can hold 74 per cent equity
in the two airports with a 49 per cent cap on foreign direct
investment, while government-owned companies, including Air-India
and Indian Airlines, can hold the remaining 26 per cent. Of
the 25 per cent private Indian holding, Indian domestic carriers
are allowed to hold up to 10 per cent equity.
wants to be a part of the government entities that will be selected
to hold equity in the venture. It is also open to being part
owners of the government holding in the venture. However, Air-India
is yet to make a formal proposal. "We are evaluating the
situation and will take a decision in consultation with the
government," said Mr Thulsidas said.
India thinks owning a terminal in the two busiest airports in
the country will help it manage its operations better. Besides,
excess capacity in the terminals can be given out to other airlines
to generate additional revenue.
The CMD said "this is the practice in most parts of the
world. National carriers operate and own terminals in most of
the airports. We also want to do it in India." Once the
airline owns the terminal, it will be undertaking functions
like ground-handling and other services in that terminal.
- fastest growing cargo airport in India
is one of the fastest growing cargo airports in the country.
Airports Authority of India (AAI) had set up here an interim
air cargo complex in 2001 by converting an aircraft hanger.
The results were very encouraging as the traffic grew by leaps
and bounds. The AAI is now planning to set up a new integrated
cargo complex with cargo apron at a cost of Rs 4.5 crore and
extend the runway from 7500 to 9000 ft, according to Mr K Ramalingam,
Ramalingam said that the cargo traffic at Coimbatore airport
was 1,073 MT in 2002-03 which almost doubled to 2.013 MT in
the year 2003-04. He said the commodities that are being exported
out of Coimbatore are textile, readymade garments, engineering
goods, jewellery and spares and the commodities that are being
imported are gold bars, textile accessories, electronic components
Chairman said Indian Airlines and Jet Airways are operating
carriers from Coimbatore. "All cargo moved by available
Jet and Indian Airline flights through gateway airports and
by bonded trucking via Kochi by Emirates and Kuwait Airways.
Only Sharjah bound cargo is lifted directly."
record, Indian Airlines has five domestic and three weekly flights
to Sharjah, Jet has five domestic and Air Sahara has seven domestic
and one weekly flight to Colombo. The passenger traffic that
moved out of the airport in 2002-03 was 2.48 lakhs domestic
and 10,000 international.
Ramalingam informed that the airport has two parking bays for
A320 type of aircraft and two for B737s. "The runway extension
project is in the process of acquisition of land and only after
the State Government hands over the land to AAI, civil work
can be started," he said.
Chairman said the AAI had already requested the State Government
for acquisition of land to extend the runway. He said the extension
of runway to 9,000 ft would allow the wide-bodied aircraft to
operate that would result into increase in cargo.
said the total area of the present cargo complex is 9,445 sq
ft. In the export area the space available for examination is
70 sq metres and for storage it is 115 sq metres. In the import
area the space available for examination is 100 sq metres and
for storage is 190 sq metres. The space for strong room is 30
sq metres and the total covered area is 500 sq metres.
available infrastructure includes vehicle parking area, off-loading
area, examination area, bonded area, strong room and two-wheeler
shed. The cargo handling services offered are export cargo admittance,
processing, storage till upliftment, import cargo receiving,
processing, delivery, providing of X-ray scanning, packing and
repacking activity and valuable cargo handling.
Ramalingam stated that APEDA has provided cold storage unit,
which is under installation at Coimbatore airport. The AI has
also procured and installed latest X-ray machines.
AAI has been holding interaction sessions with airlines and
cargo trade that include Freight Forwarders, IATA agents, Customs
House agents and other users of the cargo terminal to improve
cargo at the Coimbatore airport. Trade has been appreciative
of the AAI efforts for establishing the cargo terminal here.
Cargo Facilitation Committee (CAFAC) that associates all user
agencies plans to hold meetings every month to sort out operational
and local issues to boost the cargo movement in the region.
sets new non-stop flight distance record
Airlines has flown into the commercial flight distance record
books for the second time this year, with an A340-500 successfully
inaugurating the carrier's latest non-stop round trip commercial
air service between Singapore and New York (Newark). The A340-500
departed at 12.25 Singapore local time on June 28 and completed
the 16,600 km /9,000 nm sector to New York in 18 hours 18 minutes.
airline beat its own previous record distance for a non-stop
round trip commercial service, when it introduced the A340-500
on the service between Singapore and Los Angeles on February
3, 2004. On that occasion, the A340-500 completed the 14,093
km / 7,609 nm sector to Los Angeles in 14 hours 42 minutes.
Airlines' fleet of five A340-500s is all configured with 64
enhanced Raffles Business Class and 117 Executive Economy Class
seats. The cabins for both classes' feature special areas and
amenities for passengers to stretch their legs, socialise and
relax on ultra long haul services.
four Rolls-Royce Trent 500 engines for the best economy on ultra
long haul flights, the A340-500 enjoys unmatched operational
flexibility on non-stop flights over remote areas - such as
oceans, mountain ranges and Polar Regions.
am delighted to congratulate Singapore Airlines on successfully
completing its latest A340-500 record breaking non stop flight
between South East Asia and North America. Airbus is very proud
to be sharing in Singapore Airlines' aim of making the world
a smaller place," said Airbus President and Chief Executive
Officer Noel Forgeard.
The Airbus A330/A340 family is the market leader in its class,
with almost 850 orders from 64 customers worldwide. It is the
aircraft family that passengers prefer to travel on for long
haul flights, consistently emerging top in independent passenger
Airlines placed its original A340-500 order for five firm and
five option aircraft in 1999. The airline is also a launch customer
for the A380 Double Decker with 10 firm orders and 15 options.
Singapore Airlines will be the first airline to put the A380
into service in spring 2006.
before you go-tips for visitors to the USA
are becoming one of the largest travel groups in the world.
Over Five million of us travel every year to foreign jaunts
for sheer pleasure holidays, visiting relatives or business.
Some of the favourite haunts for Indians are the US, the UK,
Switzerland, Sri Lanka, Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand and Dubai.
the US is one of the popular visiting places, Indians also find
it difficult in getting an entry especially after 9/11 terror
acts. However, to mitigate any hardships for smooth entry, the
US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) agency has advised the
foreign visitors to carrying proper documents and be aware of
regulations concerning prohibited items.
a travel awareness campaign to educate millions of visitors
who travel to the US, the CBP Commissioner Robert Bonner said
"the agency's goal is protecting the nation from terrorists
while, at the same time, assisting and supporting the movement
of vacationers and trade."
Bonner said "the United States always has the welcome mat
out to visitors. While CBP has stepped up security at the land,
sea, and airports across our country, we are committed to treat
the entry of every legitimate traveler as professionally and
fast as possible. By knowing the regulations and what to expect,
all international visitors can facilitate their entry and have
a safe, secure, and enjoyable visit to the United States."
tips suggest that when you are on your way to the United States
you may be given a Customs and Border Protection declaration
form. Fill it out entirely and sign the bottom. You may also
be given a form I-94 (white) or a form I-94W (green). This will
ask you for basic identification information and the full address
where you will be staying in the United States.
you arrive at a port of entry in the United States you will
be inspected by an officer of the U.S. Customs and Border Protection.
Be prepared to tell the officer the purpose of your trip and
how long you wish to stay.
Most travelers will have a digital photo and two fingerprints
scans taken by the officer. This will only add a few seconds
to the interview. Be sure to follow the instructions of the
sure you have a valid nonimmigrant visa and a passport valid
for six months beyond your initial stay in the United States.
There are some exceptions to this requirement. If you are a
temporary visitor for business or pleasure, and wish to stay
for up to six months, you must apply for a B1/B2 visa at the
US Consulate in your country, unless you are exempt the visa
you are planning to travel for another purpose, example student,
temporary worker, crewperson and journalist you must apply for
a different visa in the appropriate category through the Department
of State at an American Embassy or Consulate abroad.
you are a citizen of a visa waiver country, you may apply for
entry without a visa if you are seeking entry for 90 days or
less for business or pleasure. Check to make sure your intended
purpose of travel falls within the guidelines.
you stayed beyond the 90 days allowed under the Visa Waiver
Program on your last visit to the US you are required to get
a visa (at a US Consulate in your country) for your next visit
to the United States.
Remember, even though certain individuals may be exempt from
visa and/or passport requirements, the burden of poof is on
the applicant to establish eligibility to enter the United States.
Carrying proof of citizenship will help determine this.
items may be prohibited from entry, have to meet certain requirements,
or require a license or permit. If you would like to bring in
any of the following, make sure you find out the rules and regulations
concerning them. These include Absinthe; Biological materials;
Endangered species and their products; Wildlife; Meat, poultry,
eggs and their products; Fruits, vegetables and plants; Hazardous
materials; and Weapons.
is no limit on the amount of money (U.S. or foreign) you may
bring into or take out of the United States. If you have more
than 10,000 dollars or foreign equivalent, however, you must
report this to the Customs and Border Protection officer upon
entry and/or departure.
containing habit-forming drugs must be clearly identified. Carry
only the amount you normally need. Also bring a prescription
or statement from your physician explaining that the medicine
is necessary for your well-being. US Customs and Border Protection
is the agency within the Department of Homeland Security charged
with the protection of our nation's borders. CBP unified Customs,
Immigration, and Agriculture Inspectors and the Border Patrol
into one border agency for the United States.
Chairman on IATA Board
Airways Chairman, Mr Naresh Goyal, has been elected to the Board
of Governors of the airline industry's apex global body, the
International Air Transport Association (IATA) at its 60th Annual
General Meeting that concluded in Singapore recently.
is the first time that a Chairman of a private airline from
India has been elected to IATA's prestigious Board of Governors.
The Board, also described as "IATA's Government",
plays a prominent role in representing the Association's interests
worldwide. As a Member of the 31-member Board, Mr. Goyal will
serve a two-year term until the close of IATA's 62nd AGM in
June 2006. Jet Airways has been the recipient of several international
and national awards and honours.
brings together approximately 270 airlines from around the globe.
Flights operated by these airlines comprise more than 98 per
cent of all international scheduled air traffic.