India minister says confident Jet Airways' problems will be solved
"(We are) very confident we can solve the problems at the now defunct carrier," Hardeep Singh Puri said on the sidelines of a conference in New Delhi, in comments widely interpreted as referring to Jet.
Massive debt and suffocating price competition forced what was once India's biggest private-sector airline to halt operations in April at the cost of thousands of jobs, and resulting in higher airfares across the industry.
Puri has assumed office at a time of distress in areas of Indian aviation. Last year, the government unsuccessfully sought a buyer for money-losing state-owned carrier Air India Ltd .
"We have made mistakes in civil aviation in the past which we need to correct," Puri said.
Jet's share price was 9% lower in early afternoon trade. The stock sunk in the last two trading sessions after India's largest stock exchange limited speculative trading in the firm. ■