India To Have Around 200 Operational Airports By 2040; 3 Each In Delhi & Mumbai
By 2040, Mumbai and Delhi will have three airports each, while 31 Indian cities will have two airports each. On January 15, Tuesday, this was revealed by a vision document that was released by the Ministry of Civil Aviation.
According to the report, released at Global Aviation Summit in Mumbai, it is probable that a majority of the large airports in India will be saturated in the following 10 to 15 years, reported Hindustan Times. A previous report had also said that by 2030, at least 20 Indian cities would require a second airport.
“India may have around 190-200 operational airports in 2040. The incremental land requirement is expected to be around 150,000 acres and the capital investment (not including cost of acquiring land) is expected to be $40-50 billion,” said a civil aviation ministry official. He added that most likely, the commercial airline fleet of India is likely to grow around 2,359 in March 2040 from 622 in March 2018.
Further, according to the report, brownfield (upgrading existing projects) and Greenfield (new projects) expenditure capacity expansion until 2040 in the country will probably be around $40-50 billion.
In an attempt to support low traffic airports in the initial phases, the government might even establish a NABH Nirman Fund (NNF) with a corpus of about $2 billion, according to another civil aviation ministry official. Land pooling might as well keep land acquisition costs low and provide landowners with plots with high-value developments near the airports.
Among the cities that will need a second airport by 2030 are Mumbai, Delhi, Goa, Visakhapatnam, Jaipur, Pune, Ahmedabad, Rajkot, Patna, Kolkata and Bengaluru, and more cities will be added to the list by 2035. Respective state governments will be written to by the ministry so that they can identify a new land for a new airport. This will be done to ensure that the land is identified at least five years prior to the airport reaching its capacity.
“It is good that ministry has kept 2040 in mind as aviation infrastructure should last generations. The way growth is going, Mumbai will need the third airport and they should start thinking about it now,” said Kapil Kaul, CEO & director of CAPA South Asia. The aviation and travel industry receives market intelligence from it.
India will also be equipped with, with global collaboration, commercial aircraft manufacturing ecosystem. Besides exporting to other countries, 70% of the country’s commercial aircraft will be met.
183.90 million passengers are currently handled by India’s airports per year, as revealed by the 2017-18 data released by the aviation regulator Directorate General of Civil Aviation. In recent years, the number has grown to 158.43 million in 2016-17 from 134.98 million in 2015-16. It is expected to cross 200 million in 2019, and some of the airports are already operating beyond their capacity. For instance, in 2017, 63.5 million passengers were handled by the Delhi airport and will operate beyond its capacity after it reached 70 million this year. According to Airports Council International (ACI), it is one of the busiest airports in the world. ACI is the airport authorities’ global trade representative.
With airports all set to increase in the coming years, it is really important that potential expansion is considered along with overall improvement in efficiency. Airports operating beyond its capacity is not only an issue for airport authorities but also for the travellers who obviously expect proper organization and planning by the airports.