Logistics

Govt unveils national air cargo policy

PTI Mumbai | Updated on January 16, 2019

Representative image

The policy document was released during the two-day Global Aviation Summit 2019

The Centre unveiled its much-awaited national air cargo policy, which seeks to make India among the top five air freight markets by 2025, besides creating air transport shipment hubs at all major airports over the next six years.

The policy document released during the two-day Global Aviation Summit 2019, which kick started here Tuesday, stated that the policy will encourage code sharing/inter-line agreements between foreign and Indian carriers.

As per the policy, international cargo comprises 60 per cent of the total air cargo tonnes handled in the country, logging a growth of 15.6 per cent in the previous fiscal, while domestic cargo grew by over 8 per cent, which reflects the skewed modal mix, in which roads account for over 60 per cent of cargo transportation as compared to the global average of around 30 per cent.

Indian express industry is one of the fastest growing markets globally, but with a small share of about 2 per cent of the global market, grew at a compounded annual growth rate of 17 per cent over the past five years and was estimated to be Rs 22,000 crore in 2016-17, it said.

The domestic express industry, a key constituent of the Indian express industry, is estimated to be worth Rs 17,000 crore, the policy document said adding that the international express is estimated to contribute Rs 5,000 crore to the Indian express industry.

As per the document, the potential in the new markets needs to be explored with long-term infrastructure creation in order to sustain cargo growth in the next 10-15 years at least.

The cargo policy also seeks to establish agreements between national carriers/ freighters and integrators to improve domestic connectivity as well as encourage the establishment of agreements between national and international carriers/freighters and other airline operators to provide access to key global cargo hubs.

It also aims to promote the development of a last mile/first mile connectivity program at international/regional gateways, as per the document.

As part of the security strategy under the policy, the strategy will address security related to the physical cargo, people handling the cargo, data and information related to shipments within and across all chains of custody transfers, it added.

To increase process transparency while decreasing shipment delays, costs and dwell time, a fully automated paperless trade environment with minimum face-to-face interactions will be implemented, as per the policy document.

The policy covers all three categories of air cargo transport - domestic cargo to ensure efficient flow of goods across India; international cargo facilitating all indigenous export and import of goods; and transit international cargo by making India the transit cargo hub of choice to and from other parts of the globe.

The Goods and Service Tax (GST) and other economic legislation to be reviewed by the appropriate government agencies to ensure effective measures are in place to support the national air cargo development strategies, among others, the policy document said.

Published on January 16, 2019

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