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Jet Airways silent on reports of Etihad tie-up

India's Jet Airways has refused to comment on reports that it is about to conclude an alliance with Abu Dhabi carrier Etihad Airways.

According to Indian newspaper reports, the two carriers are in advanced discussions for an alliance which would see Etihad take a 24% stake in Jet, and the two carriers enter into a wide ranging alliance, similar to those that Etihad has established with Air Berlin, Virgin Australia and Air Seychelles.

In a filing with the Indian National Stock Exchange, the carrier says that it is "aware that recently there has been much speculation in the press", and adds that it "cannot comment on such speculative reports".

However, an Etihad spokesman confirms that it has an interest in the Indian market but is not able to confirm if it would be purchasing a stake in Jet or any other carrier at this time.

"The Indian aviation industry offers tremendous potential, with significant passenger movement on domestic and international sectors," says the airline.

It adds that if it were able to find a suitable investment in India that it would make an announcement "in line with regulatory and commercial requirements".

The speculation of a possible tie-up with Etihad comes as the Indian carrier confirmed that it has submitted an application to the Indian government seeking permission to join Star Alliance, but also remains in talks with SkyTeam.

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