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Qatar Airways Refuses To Buy Stake In Jet Airways

HARSH RANJAN | 0
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| January 16 , 2019 , 16:58 IST

Qatar and Jet Airways deal got halted over Qatar's rivalry with Etihad Airways.

CEO of Qatar Airways Akbar al-Baker said on Tuesday that they will not buy a stake in Jet Airways as a substantial portion of the debt-laden Indian carrier is held by Etihad Airways, whose owner Abu Dhabi is an “enemy” of Qatar.

Abu Dhabi is part of the United Arab Emirates that cut ties with Qatar in 2017 over accusations of supporting terrorism. Doha denies the charges. The UAE, together with Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Bahrain have banned Qatar Airways since June of that year as part of the dispute.

Speaking to media Al-Baker said “We would definitely look at it (Jet Airways) if a 24 per cent stake was not held by Etihad,” on the sidelines of an aviation conference in Mumbai. “How can I take a stake in an airline which is owned by our adversary?”

Etihad plans to hike its stake in Jet to help the Indian carrier with its financial woes, a person close to the Abu Dhabi carrier told Reuters late on Monday.
Al-Baker said Qatar Airways would be “delighted” to take a stake in IndiGo, the largest airline in India - home to the world’s fastest-growing aviation market.

“But not in an airline where substantial ownership is by the enemy of my country,” he said, referring to Jet.

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Qatar Airways also remains interested in starting a fully owned airline in India, al-Baker said on Tuesday, but that is not allowed under India’s current foreign investment rules.

Al-Baker has threatened publicly to pull Qatar Airways out of the one world airline alliance despite holding minority stakes in members Cathay Pacific, British Airways and LATAM Airlines Group SA.