Ahead of the Budget 2021, the government has hinted at rationalization of various taxes in the aviation sector, which is among the hardest hit by the Covid-19 induced economic meltdown.
“We are working on a long-term plan to help the sector by rationalizing various taxes. We are looking forward to make the ecosystem smarter and more efficient to make the aviation sector sustainable,” said Usha Padhee, Joint Secretary, Ministry of Civil Aviation.
Addressing a webinar on “Connecting the Dots-Recovery of aviation, tourism and hospitality” on Friday, she underscored the need for the sector to be geared for any challenges and said that policy rejig will also help it in the long run, if it is hit by a similar crisis in the future.
The webinar was organised by Women in Aviation International – India Chapter.
Highlighting the success of Udan scheme, she further added: “Though the pandemic has adversely impacted the aviation and allied sectors, yet we have managed to take steps towards recovery. We are systematically opening the air space for operations and the air bubbles have helped aviation sector to get 60 per cent capacity of domestic sector back.”
She added that great solutions are borne out of crisis while delving into the fact how the industry has fast adapted to technology and transformed digitally.
“The crisis has led to digital transformation for the aviation sector. Now we have 100 per cent web check-ins and various technology-driven solutions have been adopted to offer touchless experience to passengers,” she quipped.
Pre-Covid forecasts indicated that in 2036 aviation industry will provide 98 million jobs and generate $5.7 trillion in GDP. Post Covid, the situation has reversed completely throwing the industry in a state of flux.
All commercial activities are now dependent on the recovery of aviation, tourism and hospitality industry.
The webinar was also attended by Fang Liu – Secretary General of the International Civil Aviation Organisation. The panel also had industry leaders and experts – Dr. Naresh Trehan, Chairman and Managing Director at Medanta, Dr. Shefali Juneja – Representative of India at International Civil Aviation Organization (first lady to be in this position), Kiran Jain – Chief Operating Officer at Noida International Airport (A Zurich Airport Company). Jain is also the first lady COO for an Indian airport.