NEW DELHI :
India will soon invite bids for privatising six more airports for which requisite approvals are being obtained, civil aviation minister Hardeep Puri said here.
Privatising six more airports was part of the economic stimulus and reform measures that the government announced in five tranches since last Wednesday. “It is only a matter of days before we will have all the requisite approvals. We intend to go ahead with the bidding process quickly," Puri said.
Airports Authority of India (AAI) chairman Arvind Singh, who was present on the occasion, explained that the government was in the process of awarding three airports to concessionaires which were part of the original six that were chosen for privatisation. Of the six airports chosen in the first round of privatisation, the ones at Ahmadabad, Lucknow and Mangalore were awarded to the highest bidder, the Adani Group. The empowered group of secretaries in the government has now decided to award the remaining three-- Guwahati, Thiruvananthapuram and Jaipur- as there is no judicial stay on the matter.
“We are proceeding with awarding these remaining three also. The AAI board has decided to privatise a further six—the airports at Varanasi, Bhubaneshwar, Amritsar, Indore, Raipur and Trichi. The proposal is approved by the civil aviation ministry and a cabinet proposal has been prepared which is under consideration of the government," said Singh. He said that once the decision is taken, the bid process will commence. Redevelopment of airports with private participation is part of a plan to improve efficiency at airports and to boost the revenues of AAI.