Etihad needs to revise Jet Airways deal - chairman

ABU DHABI Sun Feb 17, 2013 9:03pm IST

1 of 2. Jet Airways aircraft stand on tarmac at the domestic airport terminal in Mumbai September 9, 2009.

Credit: Reuters/Punit Paranjpe/Files

Stocks

   

ABU DHABI (Reuters) - Etihad Airways needs to revise its deal to buy a stake in India's Jet Airways (JET.NS) and it is too soon to say when a final agreement will be struck, the Abu Dhabi airline's chairman told Reuters on Sunday.

Sheikh Hamed bin Zayed al-Nahayan, speaking on the sidelines of a defence exhibition in the UAE capital, said officials would meet Indian Trade Minister Anand Sharma to discuss the deal.

Asked if a Jet deal would be signed by March or April, Sheikh Hamed said: "I don't know ... we need to revise it."

The terms of the possible deal have not been disclosed, but a government source said earlier this month Etihad was in talks to pick up a 24 percent stake in Jet for up to $330 million.

Asked if a Jet deal would be finalised soon, Sheikh Hamed said: "It's too early to decide."

Sheikh Hamed, who is also managing director of sovereign wealth fund Abu Dhabi Investment Authority, did not specify why the deal needs to be revised.

"We need to talk with the Indians about other issues ... including this," he said.

Unlisted Etihad's chief executive said this month the Abu Dhabi carrier was conducting due diligence on making an investment and would present the findings to its board.

The Jet Airways deal would be the first foreign investment in India's aviation industry since the government relaxed ownership rules last September.

This allows foreign airlines to buy up to 49 percent in the country's domestic carriers, many of which are facing stiff competition and high operating costs.

Sheikh Hamed also dismissed talk of the carrier's interest in India's grounded Kingfisher Airlines (KING.NS) as "rumours".

Kingfisher said in December it was in talks with several investors, including Etihad, for a stake sale but those hopes have faded as the indebted airline remains grounded. (Writing by Amran Abocar; Editing by Paul Tait)

Economic Pulse

REUTERS SHOWCASE

Gold Imports

Gold Imports

India eases gold import rule in surprise move.  Article 

Indians in Iraq

Indians in Iraq

India says no contact with 39 men held by Islamic State in Iraq.  Full Article 

Sahara Issue

Sahara Issue

Sahara looks to raise $650 million loan to fund bail.  Full Article 

Bhopal Tragedy

Bhopal Tragedy

Bhopal's toxic legacy lives on, 30 years after industrial disaster.  Full Article 

Banking Sector

Banking Sector

After record deal, more India bank takeovers on cards  Full Article 

Islamic Fund

Islamic Fund

India gets new Islamic equity fund but debt market still off-limits  Full Article 

Cricket Tragedy

Cricket Tragedy

Clarke breaks down giving heartfelt Hughes tribute  Full Article 

Nigeria Violence

Nigeria Violence

Bombs, gunfire kill 81 at crowded mosque in Nigeria's Kano  Full Article 

Movie Review

Movie Review

D’Silva's “Ungli” just skims the surface  Full Article | Related Story 

Reuters India Mobile

Reuters India Mobile

Get the latest news on the go. Visit Reuters India on your mobile device  Full Coverage