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Revamp Under the Tata Group: Air India To Buy 250 Aircraft From Airbus As part of the deal, Air India will buy 250 Airbus planes, including 40 A350 wide-body and 210 A320neo narrow-body planes, says N Chandrasekaran, group chairman, Tata Sons

By Shrabona Ghosh

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The long awaited Air India-Airbus partnership has finally been announced with Tata Sons signing a letter of intent to acquire 250 aircraft from Airbus.

"As part of the deal, Air India will buy 250 Airbus planes, including 40 A350 wide-body and 210 A320neo narrow-body planes," said N Chandrasekaran, group chairman, Tata Sons.

The announcement was made during a virtual event being attended by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, French President Emmanuel Macron, Aviation Minister Jyotiraditya Scindia and Airbus CEO Guillaume Faury.

"We have built a very good relationship with Airbus. We also have significant options to increase the fleet order once we grow, we are working for bigger partnerships. One of the ambitions for this country is to bring in commercial aircraft manufacturing in the future," the chairman said.

It's been a year since the Tata group announced the completion of the transaction for the purchase of Air India from the government of India. The airline has made some significant gains under the aegis of Tata group. From increasing total operating aircraft, average daily flights, weekly international flights to clearing backlogs, it has crossed a few milestones.

"The total operating aircraft increased by 27 per cent to 100, the number of average daily flights increased by 30 per cent and weekly international flights increased by 63 per cent. As many as 16 new international routes were announced," Air India had earlier said in a statement.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has termed the Air India-Airbus partnership as a 'landmark agreement'. The deal reflects upon the deepening ties of India and France and the success of India's aviation sector.

In December 2022, Reuters reported Air India is close to placing historic orders for as many as 500 jetliners worth tens of billions of dollars from Airbus and Boeing as part of its revival plan under the Tata Group conglomerate. "The orders include as many as 400 narrow-body jets and 100 or more wide-bodies including Airbus A350s and Boeing 787s and 777s," the report added

The deal has been lauded by UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak and has been termed as a momentous deal worth billions of pounds to the UK. The agreement will support and create new highly skilled jobs in Wales and Derbyshire, helping to boost exports as a significant portion of the manufacturing process for the new aircraft is expected to take place in the UK. The large A350 aircraft are exclusively powered by Rolls-Royce XWB engines, which are assembled and tested in Derby.

Shrabona Ghosh

Correspondent

A journalist with a cosmopolitan mindset. I lead a project called 'Corporate Innovations' wherein I cover corporates across verticals and try to tell stories on innovations. Apart from this, I write industry pieces on FMCGs, auto, aviation, 5G and defense. 
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