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Thu 4 Oct 2007 12:00 AM

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Jet Airways plans freighter airline

Company in talks with number of international players in airfreight industry to launch dedicated cargo airline.

Jet Airways has entered discussions with a number of international players in the airfreight industry to launch a dedicated cargo airline.

The Indian company's plans to establish a separate entity for airfreight operations coincide with its current expansion strategy, with several international routes being planned over the next year.

"We are talking to several players and will definitely launch a separate cargo airline. Details on the project will be announced before the end of the year," said Naresh Goyal, chairman of Jet Airways.

The airline is planning to increase its routes from India to Europe and the United States, with its first flight between Delhi and Toronto recently announced.

An application has also been submitted to the Ministry of Civil Aviation to launch flights to Dubai, Muscat and Abu Dhabi from January 2008.

This international expansion will be funded through a proposed $400 million rights issue, which was scheduled to launch this month.

However, Jet Airways has delayed the matter by two or three months following turbulence in the international credit markets.

"This does not mean that there is any lack of investor interest. We have decided to delay the issue because of the current unfavourable condition in the US market," said Goyal.

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