Alliance Air (India) plans to lease ten ATR72s in order to introduce flights to smaller towns in India under the government’s Regional Connectivity Scheme (RCS) program.
According to the Times of India, the Air India subsidiary is in the final stages of negotiating the lease. It expects deliveries to begin in December and for it to receive six of the turboprops by March next year.
The RCS aims to stimulate regional air connectivity by offering subsidies for unserved or underserved routes and capping air fares based on distance. The policy, which should be finalised by mid-October, is to be implemented from January 2017. The government plans to reverse-auction the routes, meaning the carrier quoting the lowest required subsidy will be selected.
The central government will account for 80% of the costs, while state governments will provide the remaining 20%.Alliance Air has an active fleet of thirteen aircraft, including two ATR42-300s, eight ATR72-600s and three CRJ-700s. The airline aims to phase out at least one of the ATR42s upon the arrival of the newly leased aircraft.