India will resume commercial international flights from December 15, civil aviation ministry said on Friday.
Commercial international flights to and from India will be resumed from December 15, civil aviation ministry said on Friday. The decision was taken after consultation with the Ministry of Home Affairs, the Ministry of External Affairs, and the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.
Scheduled international flights have been suspended in India since March 23 last year due to the Covid-19 pandemic. However, special international passenger flights have been operating since July last year under air bubble arrangements formed with 31 countries.
In an order, the Ministry of Civil Aviation stated: “The matter of resumption of scheduled commercial international passenger services to and from India has been examined in consultation with the Ministry of Home Affairs, the Ministry of External Affairs and the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, and it has been decided that scheduled commercial international passenger services to and from India may be resumed from December 15, 2021.”
The Ministry of Civil Aviation has decided to resume regular international flight operations, dividing countries into three categories with separate capacity restrictions based on countries recognised as “at risk” by the Ministry of Health.
The countries identified as ‘at risk’ are United Kingdom, South Africa, Brazil, Bangladesh, Botswana, China, Mauritius, Singapore, Israel, Hong Kong, New Zealand and Zimbabwe.
- For countries identified as “not at risk”, the resumption will be as per full capacity entitlements. This implies reversion to bilaterally agreed capacity entitlements and termination of air bubble arrangements.
- For countries that have been identified as “at risk” and India has formalised air bubble arrangements with, resumption will entail 75 per cent of pre-Covid operations of Indian or foreign carrier, whichever is higher subject to a minimum of 7 frequencies per week.
- For countries which have been identified as “at risk” and India has no air bubble arrangement with, resumption of commercial flight operations will be restricted to 50 per cent of bilateral capacity entitlements or 50 per cent of pre-Covid operations of Indian or foreign carrier, whichever is higher
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