GMR Hyderabad International Airport Limited (GHIAL) plans to expand the passenger terminal at Rajiv Gandhi International Airport (RGIA) in the Indian city of Hyderabad by next year to make provisions for the estimated capacity of 12 million passengers annually.

Commissioned in March 2008, the passenger number at RGIA has crossed ten million passengers last year.

The airport has the scope of expanding, in a phased manner to hold over 40 million passenger annually.

According to the GHIAL CEO SGK Kishore, the proposal for the expansion is "currently in the design stage."

"As we have almost reached the 12 million mark, we have to go for expansion of the airport this year."

GHIAL aims to begin the expansion work by next year and expect to increase the capacity of the airport to 20 million per year over the next five years.

Kishore was quoted by The New Indian Express as saying: "As we have almost reached the 12 million mark, we have to go for expansion of the airport this year.

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"In the next five years, we will be expanding it in phases. After the expansion, the airport will have a bigger terminal facility, more security lanes, more check-in counters and rooftop solar panels.

"As the growth of airports is steady, we are expecting to reach 20 million passengers in the next five years and want to be prepared for the same.”

The passenger traffic at RGIA has increased by 20% this financial year compared to the 24% last year.

The airport carried over 100,000t of cargo volume during 2014-15, which marks a growth of over 11% over the previous year.

Kishore was quoted by The New Indian Express as saying: "Coming to the cargo, we are one of the fastest growing airports.

"To strengthen it further, we want to build on our pharma capability and will be concentrating more on perishables, food products, express cargo to increase the cargo growth rate."

The cargo that comes from outside Hyderabad accounts for about 15% of the total cargo at present and the company aims to double this soon.

Besides, the solar capacity at RGIA will be increased to 30MW over the next three years to meet all energy requirements.

Image: RGIA has the scope to increase its capacity to accommodate 40 million passengers annually. Photo: courtesy of Rajiv Gandhi International Airport.