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Photo: HT
Photo: HT

Agreements of finance for Jewar Airport to be closed by April next year

The airport will cater to 12 million passengers once the first phase is completed by mid-2024

The concessionaire of the upcoming airport at Jewar, Yamuna International Airport Pvt. Ltd (YIAPL), plans to complete all the financing agreements for the project by April 2021 and begin construction soon after, YIAPL chairman and managing director Daniel Bircher said.

“We expect to start the construction in the second quarter of (calendar year) 2021," Bircher said. This is, however, subject to the state government handing over the land by then, he added. In November 2019, Switzerland’s Zurich Airport International AG (ZAI) had emerged as the highest bidder for the proposed airport at Jewar, Uttar Pradesh, on the outskirts of Delhi, sparking hope for the long-delayed project and the development of the surrounding area.

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ZAI had floated a special purposed vehicle to implement the project.

The concession agreement for the greenfield airport was signed in October 2020 between YIAPL and UP government agency Noida International Airport Authority.

YIAPL is in advanced discussions with banks and other financial institutions for financial closure, Bircher said. “We are working at a debt-to-equity ratio that is common for airport projects. The overall investment that we have committed is in the area of 4,500 crore. We will bring in the equity part as investor and debt financing will happen in Indian rupee."

The airport will cater to 12 million passengers once the first phase is completed by mid-2024. It will cater to 30 million passengers on the completion of second phase, 50 million in the third phase, and 70 million passengers by the end of the fourth phase, subject to passenger growth.

YIAPL plans to create an airport hub catering primarily to Airbus A320 and Boeing 737 aircraft for domestic, and short- and mid-haul international flights. It would also provide overnight aircraft parking for airlines. “Our focus will include connectivity in north India, metropolitan areas in south India, and international airports. We see large potential for a regional international connection hub to the Middle East and East Asia," Bircher said.

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