Air Deccan to launch Cargo service

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{image-air deccan_08072008.jpg}Bangalore, Jul 8: Low cost airliner Air Deccan will launch its Cargo service within next six months, Managing Director Capt G R Gopinath said today.

Talking to UNI on the sidelines of inauguration of a three-day Indo-US Workshop on 'Systems and Technology Requirements Opportunities for Enhanced Regional Transportation in India' organised by National Aerospace Laboratories here, he said, "Things are going on as planned and we should be able to start the Cargo service by January 2009." Already nine aircraft have been procured to begin with and about 60 personnel would be deployed.

Capt Gopinath, who brought a revolution in air service by introducing low cost approach, wants to cater to the needs of small entrepreneurs whose products were denied of reaching bigger markets.

He said that the idea to start Cargo service struck as the he had bitter experience and his two aircraft were stranded due to technical snags and there were no immediate replacement possible due to poor cargo service available in the country. "Deccan Cargo service would help many small and medium entrepreneurs whether they are in manufacturing or agriculturist or horticulturists," he said.

It is also to take advantage of its growing domestic network, Air Deccan had already set up a new subsidiary that would run the cargo service.

"We are actively strategies to begin low cost cargo operations with the conviction that transporting apples from Kashmir to Chennai at a lowest possible cost will give a much needed boost to our primary economy," he said.

The Civil Aviation Ministry, which had estimated the need for 500 dedicated cargo planes in 10 year's time, has increased foreign direct investment from 26 per cent to 74 per cent in the sector.

Earlier, delivering his keynote address, Capt Gopinath opined that the increase in fuel cost would not deter low coast service at present provided by Air Deccan nor it affects service. "It is like you stop eating if the price of rice is increased. Our company will maintain its brand of low cost airfares," he added.

Increasing efficiency, innovation and building a different model was the need of the hour and this was where development and exchange of technology India leads not only for integration but also development of global economy, he said.

He said when he started the airline service the percentage of air travellers were only one per cent but now it has increased to three per cent.

There were 500 air strips in the country most of which were not utilised despite having potential of being developed into full fledged airports, he added.


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