Airlines & Airports
|December 13, 2013|
Star Alliance and Air India Recommence Integration Process
|At their board meeting held in Vienna today, the Chief Executives of the Star Alliance member airlines decided unanimously to recommence the integration process with Air India. |
"Star Alliance has long held the opinion that India is such an important aviation market that it should be fully represented in the Alliance," said Mark Schwab, Star Alliance CEO. "However the level of change in the domestic market in recent years did not make it easy for an airline to become an alliance member."
"The market in India is now showing signs of stabilisation. Today we see an Air India which has successfully completed its merger with Indian Airlines and is building up a new fleet that forms the basis for a much improved level of service. This is why we believe the time is now right to recommence the integration process," he added.
"Today is an historic day for Air India. The decision to recommence the Star Alliance integration process will be beneficial for both sides. We are grateful for the warmth, support and encouragement with which all Alliance members have welcomed the decision", said Rohit Nandan, Air India Chairman and Managing Director.
The Indian national carrier was originally accepted as a future member of Star Alliance in December 2007, but the integration process was halted in July 2011. The suspension was a joint decision which allowed Air India to focus on completing its merger with Indian Airlines, without the distraction of the work required for full integration into the Star Alliance network.
The Star Alliance network was established in 1997 as the first truly global airline alliance to offer worldwide reach, recognition and seamless service to the international traveller. Its acceptance by the market has been recognized by numerous awards, including the Air Transport World Market Leadership Award and Best Airline Alliance by both Business Traveller Magazine and Skytrax. The member airlines are: Adria Airways, Aegean Airlines, Air Canada, Air China, Air New Zealand, ANA, Asiana Airlines, Austrian, Avianca, Brussels Airlines, Copa Airlines, Croatia Airlines, EGYPTAIR, Ethiopian Airlines, EVA Air, LOT Polish Airlines, Lufthansa, Scandinavian Airlines, Shenzhen Airlines, Singapore Airlines, South African Airways, SWISS, TAM Airlines, TAP Portugal, Turkish Airlines, THAI, United and US Airways. Air India has been announced as a future member airline with Avianca Brazil to join under the existing Avianca membership. Overall, the Star Alliance network offers more than 21,900 daily flights to 1,328 airports in 195 countries.