Flying abroad by chartered flights to become easier

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Domestic private jet operators will no longer need clearance from the aviation regulator for overseas flights, as the government has decided to do away with the requirement, a move being seen as a step to boost ease-of-doing business.

Revised norms, applicable at airports with custom and immigration facilities, will come into effect from December 15, an official release said today.

"This is a step forward in facilitating the ease of doing business for the business and general aviation industry," said Rohit Kapoor, president, Business Aircraft Operators Association (BAOA), an industry lobby group.

Presently, prior permission (called YA number) of the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) is mandatory for Indian-registered charters or private jets to fly out of India.

Suitable amendments have already been made in the Civil Aviation Requirement (CAR) for such operations, the release said.

"As part of the continuous effort for simplification of regulatory requirements for aircraft operations in the country, DGCA has revised the CAR... regarding requirements for issue of non-scheduled flight clearances by DGCA for Indian registered aircraft," it said.

"Indian aircraft operators approved/authorised to undertake international operations shall not be required to obtain prior permission from DGCA for undertaking international non-scheduled flights from/to airports with custom/immigration facilities," the release said.

The approved operators can carry out international operations by filing a flight plan with the concerned ATC unit, it added.

Both scheduled and non-scheduled operators are certified by DGCA for undertaking international operations in compliance with ICAO Standards and Recommended Practises (SARPs) and are given an 'area of operations based on their operational capabilities.

As part of the relaxed norms, the DGCA will also issue an authorisation, valid for five years, to private aircraft operators for carrying out overseas flights based on ICAO SARPs norms, the release added.

"We welcome the civil aviation ministry's efforts to remove the pre-condition of obtaining YA number for Indian-registered business and charter aircraft jets," Kapoor said.

Business jets are not merely a luxury but in most cases a necessity in terms of gaining quick access and connectivity where time is of essence, he said, adding doing away with YA number will ensure that Indian operators can fly overseas without delay.

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