Adani Enterprises Win Highest Bid To Operate Five Indian Airports
Adani Enterprises Ltd has won the rights to operate five of six airports that were put up for privatization last year. According to The Indian Express, the financial bids for the five airports were opened on Monday, February 25 and after a tough competition from others, the giant emerged as the winning bid for Ahmedabad, Lucknow, Jaipur, Thiruvananthapuram and Mangalore airports.
Adani wins bid
Reportedly, the bidding for Guwahati airport could not open as the Guwahati High Court granted a stay order against the privatisation process. The government had invited bids from private companies to run these airports for the next 50 years on a public-private partnership (PPP) basis. Bids were also received from established players such as GMR Airports, Autostrade Indian Infrastructure Development Pvt Ltd, PNC Infratech Ltd among others. A government official said, “The aviation ministry will prepare a cabinet note listing the bids received for these airports. Formal announcement will be made once the cabinet clears it, which should happen soon,” reported The Economic Times.
This time around, the government adopted the per passenger fee model which is a modification of the revenue-sharing model which was used during the privatisation of Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore and Hyderabad airports. The government, with the new model, expects to keep the prices under check. Reportedly, this is the central government’s first privatisation attempt in 13 years after the GMR and GVK groups won the rights to manage Mumbai and Delhi airports.
With this new development, the billionaire Gautam Adani-controlled Adani Enterprises has entered into the aviation industry and had broken the duopoly of the GVK and GMR groups – which are the largest private sector operators in India. Analysts believe that this move has opened up the field further and may welcome wider participation from private players in the future.
Meanwhile, Adani said that it would work towards building infrastructure in these airports. “The airports at Ahmedabad, Jaipur, Lucknow, Trivandrum and Mangalore remain lifelines to their respective states that will enable us to infuse enhanced growth and give wings to the aspirations of the Indian people. We would be aiming to scale up the infrastructure to bring these facilities on par with global standards,” it said.