The Civil Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri told the Rajya Sabha on Wednesday that the National carrier Air India has a total debt of Rs 58,351 crore as on March 31 this year.
Last year, the Centre had invited Expression of Interest (EoI) for strategic disinvestment of Air India, including its shareholding in Air India Express and Air India Air Transport Services Limited.
However, it did not receive any bid till the last date on May 31, 2018. Again this year the Centre is preparing to invite bids.
In a written reply to a question in the Rajya Sabha, Puri said, “As per the provisional figures of FY 2018-19, the total debt of Air India Ltd as on March 31, 2019 is Rs 58,351.93 crore.”
In November 2018, Government of India had cleared a plan to halve the national air carrier’s Rs 55,000 crore debt. The Modi government had cleared a plan to transfer near Rs 29,000 crore debt to an SPV (Special Purpose Vehicle) to help lower Air India’s interest outgo substantially.
According to the plan, The government is transferring the airline’s working capital debt of about Rs 29,000 crore to Air India Assets Holding (AIAHL).