Civil aviation ministry has requested the petroleum ministry to notify Aviation Turbine Fuel (ATF) under regulatory regime of Petroleum and Natural Gas Regulatory Board (PNGRB) once again. The civil aviation ministry has taken up the matter with the petroleum ministry at several occasions. However, the petroleum ministry has rejected the proposal so far.
In its another effort, the civil aviation ministry stated that it has received a representation from Air India, that at airports such as Dharamshala, Ludiana, Agatti, Shillong, Tezpur and Lilabari, there is no ATF availability and the aircrafts had to carry both ways fuel from originating stations. Non-availability of fuel reduces the pay load of the aircraft which in turn restricts carriage of passenger. This reduction in number of passenger results in unviable operations as the cost per seat increases.
Civil aviation ministry mentioned that at a time when there is a dire need to provide air connectivity to remote areas of the country, and when operating costs of airline industry is on the rise, the airline industry is denied of even the availability of ATF at these stations.
The availability of ATF would result in full utilization of capacity making available more seats for public and improve viability of operations which is an important requirement for airline business to sustain air connectivity to airports in Tier-II and Tier-III towns, the ministry asserted.
Civil aviation ministry further stated that PNGRB Act, 2006 provides for protecting the interests of consumers and to ensure uninterrupted and adequate supply of Petroleum, Oil and Lubricants in all parts of the country and to promote the competitive markets. In view of the above, the civil aviation ministry requested once again to notify ATF so as to facilitate PNGRB to exercise their powers.