GMR Hyderabad International Airport (GHIAL) is planning to invest around Rs85bn ($1.23bn) to upgrade various facilities at the Rajiv Gandhi International Airport (RGIA) in Hyderabad, India.

The investment is aimed at doubling the airport’s capacity from the existing 25 million passengers per annum (MPPA) to 50 MPPA, according to The Times of India.

GHIAL, which manages RGIA, has already submitted an application to the Expert Appraisal Committee (EAC) of the Union Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEF).

The application, which is currently pending before MoEF, has sought environmental clearance for the airport expansion.

Originally built to cater to the needs of around 12 MPPA, the airport’s existing Terminal 1 (T1) handled 21.4 million passengers in 2018-19, an increase of 17% from 18.3 million passengers in 2017-18.

GHIAL said that the airport does not require additional land for the proposed expansion of the facilities as it already has 5,495 acres of land.

If the expansion plan is approved, it would take up to six years for construction to be completed. The expansion work is likely to create direct employment for over 5,000 local residents, as well as double the number of indirect jobs.

The expansion includes building a second terminal (T2), upgrading the existing T1, and increasing the capacity of the cargo terminal and associated warehouses.

In April this year, GMR raised $300m through an international bond issue to expand the airport.

GMR Infrastructure recently agreed to offload around 44% of its airports business, GMR Airports, to Tata, GIC Singapore, and SSG Capital Management, to raise Rs80bn ($1.16bn).

GHIAL operates as a company promoted as a joint venture (JV), with GMR Group owning 63%, Airports Authority of India (AAI) 13%, and the Government of Telangana and Malaysia Airports Holdings Berhad holding 13% and 11%, respectively.