‘Airports privatisation to see significant foreign participation’

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on July 26, 2019 Published on July 26, 2019

G Mohapatra, Chairman of AAI   -  Sushil Kumar Verma

20-25 airports to come up for privatisation, says AAI chief

There is likely to be “significant participation” from foreign airports in the second round of airport privatisation, said Guruprasad Mohapatra, Chairman, Airports Authority of India, on Friday.

The number and names of airports are likely to be finalised and sent to the Ministry of Civil Aviation before the Chairman AAI demits office on July 31 to take up his new position as Secretary to the government on August 1.

The Ministry will take the process forward which will end with the Cabinet giving its nod for the successful bidders. At the moment, the time line for the second round of airport privatisation is yet to be drawn up although 20-25 airports are expected to be put up for privatisation.

Asked whether AAI will be reduced to being a mere landlord which gets funds from the private entities managing the airports, the outgoing AAI Chairman said that the only way airports can be developed around the country is if the private sector comes in and the government moves to developing underdeveloped airports.

He added that revenues for AAI had now improved because of the revenue share from privatised airports and redeployment of manpower.

Mohapatra said that the process of having a second airport in Ahmedabad had already started with a site being identified and a joint venture company being set up. He indicated that there was a need for having a second airport in all the metro cities including Chennai.

Asked when the assets of Mangaluru, Lucknow and Ahmedabad airports will be transferred to Adani Enterprises, he said that there was a procedure laid down for each airport. He added that in the case of Ahmedabad it could happen sometime in April-May next year.

Adani Enterprises had won the bid to take over the operations and management of these three airports earlier this month. The group will look after all services at these airports barring air traffic control and communication, navigation and surveillance services.

Published on July 26, 2019

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