In-Principle approval to set up 21 new Greenfield Airports

July 28: The government of India has formulated a Greenfield Airports (GFA) Policy, 2008 for the development of new Greenfield airports in the country. As per the policy, if any developer including the State Government desires to develop an airport, they are required to identify a suitable site and get the Pre-feasibility Study conducted for the construction of an airport and submit a proposal to the Central Government for ‘Site Clearance’ followed by ‘In-Principle’ approval.

The government of India has accorded ‘In-Principle’ approval for setting up 21 new Greenfield Airports namely, Mopa in Goa, Navi Mumbai, Shirdi and Sindhudurg in Maharashtra, Kalaburagi, Vijayapura, Hassan and Shivamogga in Karnataka, Dabra (Gwalior) in Madhya Pradesh, Kushinagar and Noida (Jewar) in Uttar Pradesh, Dholera and Hirasar in Gujarat, Karaikal in Puducherry, Dagadarthi, Bhogapuram and Orvakal (Kurnool) in Andhra Pradesh, Durgapur in West Bengal, Pakyong in Sikkim, Kannur in Kerala and Hollongi (Itanagar) in Arunachal Pradesh across the country. Out of these, 11 Greenfield airports viz. Durgapur, Shirdi, Kannur, Pakyong, Kalaburagi, Orvakal (Kurnool), Sindhudurg, Kushinagar, Itanagar, Mopa and Shivamogga have been operationalised.

Besides, the Ministry of Civil Aviation has also launched Regional Connectivity Scheme (RCS) – UDAN (UdeDeshkaAamNagrik) on 21-10-2016 to stimulate regional air connectivity and make air travel affordable to the masses. An airport included in the awarded routes of UDAN and requires upgradation/development for commencement of RCS operations, is developed under the “Revival/upgradation of unserved and underserved airports/heliports/water aerodromes” Scheme. Under the scheme, the unserved & underserved airports/airstrips, are identified/awarded all over the country including in the States of Bihar, Jharkhand, Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal and North Eastern States for revival/development and to operate UDAN flights. To date, 74 airports (including heliports, water aerodromes & greenfield airports) have been operationalised across the country under UDAN (UdeDeshkaAamNagrik) since the inception of the UDAN Scheme in 2016. State wise list of airports operationalised/revived under RCS is in Annexure.

Out of the above-mentioned 21 Greenfield Airports, the Government of India has accorded ‘in-principle’ approval for setting up 7 greenfield airports as international airports namely Mopa in Goa, Navi Mumbai in Maharashtra, Karaikal in Puducherry, Jewar (Noida) in Uttar Pradesh, Dholera and Hirasar in Gujarat and Bhogapuram in Andhra Pradesh. Out of these 7 airports, the Airports Authority of India (AAI) has undertaken the development of two airports namely Hirasar and Dholera at a total project cost of Rs.1405 crore and Rs.1305 crore respectively from its own resources. Financing the remaining greenfield airport projects is the responsibility of concerned airport developers. Further, a timeline for the completion of the airport projects depends upon many factors such as land acquisition, availability of mandatory clearances, financial closure, etc.

The Ministry of Civil Aviation (MoCA) has taken various steps to attract investments from private investors for the development of airport infrastructure in the country including Greenfield Airports. 100% Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in Greenfield and Brownfield airport projects under the FDI Policy has been permitted. MoCA has granted ‘in-principle approval to various State Governments, who have undertaken the development of Greenfield Airports under Public Private Partnership (PPP) mode with private investment including Kannur in Kerala (Rs 2342 crore), Durgapur in West Bengal (Rs 670 crore), Mopa in Goa (Rs 3400 crore), Navi Mumbai (Rs 19646 crore) and Sindhudurg  (Rs 520 crore) in Maharashtra, Bhogapuram in Andhra Pradesh (Rs 2500 crore) and Noida (Jewar) (Rs 10056 crore) in Uttar Pradesh.

Upgradation of airports as international airports is undertaken by the Airports Authority of India (AAI) and concerned airport operators from time to time depending upon commercial viability, traffic demand, availability of land etc. Since 2014, 4 airports namely Tirupati, Vijayawada, Kushinagar and Mopa Airports have been declared as International Airports. With this, the number of international airports has increased to 30.

The government of India, the Ministry of Civil Aviation has formulated a Greenfield Airports Policy, 2008 for the development of Greenfield Airports across the country. An applicant proposing to set up an airport has to submit an application in the prescribed format to the Steering Committee for ‘site clearance’ and ‘in principle approval. After that, the applicant has to develop the airport as per schedule.

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