In India, one can never over-look the political factors which influence each and every industry existing in the country. Like it or not, the political interference has to be present everywhere. Given below are a few of the political factors with respect to the airline industry:
The airline industry is very susceptible to changes in the political environment as it has a great bearing on the travel habits of its customers. An unstable political environment causes uncertainty in the minds of the air travellers, regarding travelling to a particular country. Overall India’s recent political environment has been largely unstable due to international events & continued tension with Pakistan. The recent Gujarat riots & the government’s inability to control the situation have also led to an increase in the instability of the political arena.
International airlines are greatly affected by trade relations that their country has with others. Unless governments of the two countries trade with each other, there could be restrictions of flying into particular area leading to a loss of potential air traffic (e.g. Pakistan & India) Another aspect is that in countries with high corruption levels like India, bribes have to be paid for every permit & license required. Therefore constant liasoning with the minister & other government official is necessary.
The state owned airlines suffer the maximum from this problem. These airlines have to make several special considerations with respect to selection of routes, free seats to ministers, etc which a privately owned airline need not do. The state owned airlines also suffers from archaic laws applying only to them such as the retirement age of the pursers & hostesses, the labour regulations which make the management less flexible in taking decision due to the presence of a strong union, & the heavy control &interference of the government. This affects the quality of the service delivery & therefore...