New Delhi : National carrier Air India is planning to raise USD 555 million by way of bridge loan for the purchase of three Boeing aircraft.The disinvestment-bound Air India would be taking delivery of three B777-300 ER planes early next year.

Now, the airline has sought offers “banks/ financial institutions to arrange a bridge financing up to USD 555 million or Rs 3594 crore for financing the acquisition of the three B777-300 ER aircraft to be drawn equally at the time of taking delivery of the aircraft,” the tender document said.The B777-300 ER aircraft owned by Air India has 342 seats for passengers.

As per the purchase agreement with Boeing, Air India is to buy 15 B777-300 ER aircraft and it has already taken deliver of 12 such planes.

In 2006, Air India placed orders with Boeing for 68 aircraft — 27 Dreamliners, 15 B777-300 ERs, eight B777-200 LRs and 18 B737-800s.

Of these, the state-run carrier has already taken the delivery of 65 planes.

At present, the flagship airline has a fleet of 115 aircraft

“Government of India has indicated that they would issue its guarantee for the bridge financing of B777-300ER aircraft for a period of 12 months or till the date the loan is refinanced whichever is earlier,” the document said.

The financing facility would be a direct loan without the requirement for formation of a Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) structure which requires title transfer, it added.

Earlier this month, the airline took delivery of its last Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner.

The government is working on the modalities for the proposed strategic disinvestment of Air India, which has been in the red for long.