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oneworld backs off Kingfisher membership as doubts continue

oneworld backs off Kingfisher membership as doubts continue

Airline alliance oneworld has postponed the entry of Indian airline Kingfisher as doubts over its economic viability to continue to plague the carrier.

Kingfisher has been expected to join the alliance later this week, but has now been given time to “strengthen its financial position”.

oneworld chief executive, Bruce Ashby, said: “These are turbulent times for the airline industry in India and many other parts of the world. 

“We have been working closely with Kingfisher Airlines over the past months and it has become increasingly clear recently that the airline needs more time to resolve the financial issues it is confronting before it can be welcomed into oneworld.

Kingfisher had been expected to join oneworld on February 10th.

Kingfisher Airlines chairman Vijay Mallya added: “In light of the many priorities centred around Kingfisher Airlines’ recapitalisation efforts, we felt it prudent to defer our entry into the alliance for a little while.

“This will allow us the opportunity to focus on the issues at hand and we look forward to being part of the oneworld alliance very shortly.”

Also today, Kingfisher has been suspended from the International Air Transport Association (IATA) Clearing House (ICH) payment system.

The system is used by the majority of airlines to settle payments for interline agreements.

Approximately 80 per cent of interline transactions are settled through it.