The has proposed new conditions to induct into the global airlines consortium that the Indian government says it cannot accept.
“The alliance has recently put forward additional conditions that cannot be accepted,” Civil Aviation Minister Vayalar Ravi said. He did not elaborate on the new conditions.
Air India’s entry into the global pact between 27 airlines was indefinitely put on hold Aug. 1 as its executive board was unable to decide on the induction date.
“The member airlines of the Star Alliance network and Air India have jointly concluded that the integration of Air India into the global airline alliance will be suspended. This is due to the fact that Air India has not met the minimum joining conditions that were contractually agreed in December 2007,” the alliance said in a statement.
According to the minister, the national carrier had earlier missed two previous deadlines for joining the alliance, but later fulfilled the requirements.
The date for fulfilling various conditions to join the alliance was July 31, 2011.
“The deadline for complying with the minimum joining requirements (MJRs) could not be achieved by Air India due to delay in implementation of a single ‘AI’ code and the new passenger service system (PSS),” the minister said.
The national carrier was extended an invitation to join Star Alliance in December 2007 in Beijing, withas the sponsor. But delays in software and other operational integration after the merger of Indian Airlines and Air India had put paid to plans.
Formed in 1997, Star Alliance is a consortium of 27 airlines, including Lufthansa,, , and Swiss, among other major airlines of the world. Its members have over 4,000 aircraft and serve 181 countries.
Star Alliance CEO, Jaan Albrecht said, “With the collective decision to put the integration efforts on hold ... we aim to contribute to Air India’s flexibility to concentrate on its ongoing strategic reorientation. In this process our member carriers will continue to provide assistance to Air India wherever required.”