Air India sale: DPIIT notifies decision to permit NRIs to own up to 100% stake in cash-strapped national carrier

The Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT) has notified a decision of the union cabinet to allow non-resident Indians (NRIs) to control up to 100 percent stake in disinvestment-bound Air India

Press Trust of India March 20, 2020 15:09:55 IST
Air India sale: DPIIT notifies decision to permit NRIs to own up to 100% stake in cash-strapped national carrier

New Delhi: The Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT) has notified a decision of the union cabinet to allow non-resident Indians (NRIs) to control up to 100 percent stake in disinvestment-bound Air India.

The FDI policy earlier permitted NRIs to take only 49 percent stake in the airline.

In its press note, the DPIIT said: "Foreign investments in Air India including that of foreign airlines shall not exceed 49 percent either directly or indirectly except in case of those NRIs, who are Indian Nationals, where foreign investment is permitted up to 100 percent under automatic route".

Air India sale DPIIT notifies decision to permit NRIs to own up to 100 stake in cashstrapped national carrier

Representational image. News18

On 4 March, the cabinet had taken a decision in this regard.

The decision came at a time when the government has sought preliminary bids for 100 percent stake sale in the national carrier.

It also said that the condition that substantial ownership and effective control (SOEC) of Air India shall continue to be vested in Indian nationals.

An official statement has earlier stated that in light of the proposed strategic disinvestment of 100 percent of Air India by the government, it has been decided that foreign investment in Air India be brought on a level-playing field with other scheduled airline operators.

The national carrier will have no residual government ownership and will be completely privately owned.

Under the SOEC framework, which is followed in the airline industry globally, a carrier that flies overseas from a particular country should be substantially owned by that country's government or its nationals.

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