Kerala’s state government in India has formed a committee to decide on the technical-financial consultant for the newly established special purpose entity (SPE) known as Thiruvananthapuram International Airport (TIAL).

The newly formed committee will be headed by Kerala chief secretary Tom Jose.

TIAL will be registered as a private limited company. It will start operations with the initial authorised share capital of Rs1m ($14,313) and paid-up capital of Rs500,000 ($7,157).

TIAL was formed after Kerala expressed its interest to manage Thiruvananthapuram Airport and obtained permission from the Indian Government to set up an SPE.

Through the SPE, the state government will participate in the Airports Authority of India’s (AAI) bid to privatise Thiruvananthapuram Airport.

“Kerala argued that the facility should be handed over to the state directly for operation.”

The state government will acquire a 26% interest or more in the newly formed entity. It will also offer shares to parties that include Kannur and Kochi airports, Kerala State Industrial Development Corporation (KSIDC), and Kerala Infrastructure Investment Fund Board.

Opposing the Indian Government’s move to privatise Thiruvananthapuram Airport, Kerala argued that the facility should be handed over to the state directly for operation, management and development through a special purpose entity.

Kerala state government claimed it should be given first preference in the bidding process for the airport. The state government added that successful development and management of Kochi and Kannur airports are proofs of its experience.

The deadline for submission of bids is 14 February while the technical bids are slated to open on 16 February. The successful firm will receive the letter of award on 28 February.