Call to adopt Delhi, Mumbai model

Our Bureau

Joint venture route

Two joint

venture companies, DIAL and MAIL, run the Delhi, Mumbai airports, respectively.

AAI has

a 26 pc stake in the two companies.

ICAO nod

for the construction of new greenfield airport in Mumbai.

New Delhi, Aug. 18

The Tamil Nadu Government has written to the Centre asking that the model followed for development of airports in Delhi and Mumbai be adopted for the proposed modernisation of the Chennai airport.

"The letter has requested that the proposed modernisation be completed quickly. It has also asked that the route followed for modernising the airports in Delhi and Mumbai be adopted for Chennai also," a senior government official said.

The Centre has followed the joint venture route for development of Delhi and Mumbai airports. Two new joint venture companies, Delhi International Airport Ltd (DIAL) and Mumbai Airport International Ltd (MAIL), have been set up to run the two metro airports.

The joint venture partners have a 74 per cent stake in these two companies with the foreign direct investment level being capped at 49 per cent. Airports Authority of India has a 26 per cent stake in the two companies.

On Friday, the issue of modernisation of Chennai and Kolkata airports was discussed at a meeting that the Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh, had with the Minister for Civil Aviation, Mr Praful Patel. "It was decided that both the projects should be taken up and completed at the earliest. We hope to be able to finalise the route that should be followed for modernisation of the two airports within a month," senior Government officials said.

Commenting on the proposed modernisation of Kolkata airport, official sources indicated that there was a divergence of views. "While the State's Chief Secretary has written asking that AAI be asked to take up the proposed modernisation, the Chief Minister has lauded the manner in which the Delhi and Mumbai airport restructuring has been carried out," sources said. The proposed modernisation of both the airports is estimated to cost around Rs 7,000 crore.

Meanwhile, the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) has given its approval for the construction of a new greenfield airport in Mumbai. "The ICAO technical feasibility report has been received and this has given the go ahead for a new airport to come up in Panvel," a senior official said.

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(This article was published in the Business Line print edition dated August 19, 2006)
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