The Government of India has proposed to launch the New Generation Airports for Bharat (NABH) Nirman scheme to increase capacity at the country’s airports by more than five times to handle one billion passenger trips annually.
The proposal was unveiled as part of the latest union budget for the 2018-19 fiscal year, which allocated a sum of Rs66bn ($1.03bn) for India’s Civil Aviation Ministry.
Out of the total allocation, Rs45bn ($699) has been earmarked for purchasing two new Boeing 777-300 ER aircraft for use in VVIP operations.
A sum of Rs10bn ($159m) has been allocated for India’s regional air connectivity scheme Ude Deshka Aam Nagrik (Udan).
The government is also set to make necessary arrangements to promote investment in seaplane activities.
Responding to the budget, International Air Transport Association India country director Amitabh Khosla said that India is predicted to become the third largest aviation market by 2024.
Khosla was quoted by Press Trust of India (PTI) as saying: “We welcome the focus on airport infrastructure capacity announced in the Budget.
“In our 20-year passenger forecasts, IATA anticipates India will become the third largest aviation market by 2024.
“But this is by no means guaranteed. To make this a reality, airport capacity in India needs to be augmented and expanded quickly.”
In the new budget, the Indian government has also allocated Rs733m ($11m) for Airports Authority of India (AAI), which received Rs1.4bn ($23m) in the last fiscal year.
However, AAI is expected to receive Rs40.86bn ($23m) through internal and extra-budgetary resources (IEBR).