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AirAsia plans airline joint venture in India

  • Associated Press
  • February 20, 2013 - 5:53 AM

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia - Budget carrier AirAsia says it will set up an airline with India's Tata conglomerate to tap the world's second most populous nation after moves to liberalize its airline industry.

AirAsia says it has applied to Indian authorities to take a 49 percent stake in a joint venture, with the remaining 51 percent held by Tata Sons Ltd. and tycoon Arun Bhatia. The move follows government steps to ease foreign investment rules to help revive a slowing economy.

AirAsia says India's aviation business has enormous long-term growth potential. It said in a statement Wednesday that the joint venture, to be based in Chennai, will service domestic cities.

AirAsia, which is Southeast Asia's top no-frills carrier, has similar ventures in Thailand, Indonesia, the Philippines and Japan.

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