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India must make improvements to tackle growing demand in aviation sector: IATA

PW Bureau 

Even though domestic airlines have added new planes to their fleet almost every week, airport capacity has remained static, the IATA said New Delhi: India must make improvements in its aviation procedures to keep up with the rising passenger demand in the country, which is expected to see air passenger traffic grow threefold by 2037, the International Air Transport Association (IATA) has said in a study. India, one of the fastest-growing aviation markets in the world, has a shortage of airport infrastructure. As passenger traffic surges in the years to come, it could result in stress at major airports. Even though domestic airlines have added new planes to their fleet almost every week, airport capacity has remained static. This has also resulted in flight delays, stemming from unprecedented congestion at airports in major cities like New Delhi and Mumbai.

Current infrastructure capacity expansion can’t meet growth

“In response to this growth in demand (in India), improving processes should be considered a primary solution as infrastructure capacity expansion cannot keep up with the speed of traffic growth. However, in most Indian airports, several processes remain manual and are not so efficient, e.g. requiring stamping on boarding pass at multiple touch points,” the IATA study said.

IATA makes multiple suggestions

The global airline association, in its paper titled ‘Aviation Facilitation and Security Priorities for Enhancing the Passenger Journey at Airports in India,’ said the country should also scrap stamping procedures at airports and promote mobile boarding pass (MBP). Among other changes, they further said that India must also take on automation for departure and arrivals both, relocate hand luggage screening for international arrivals and adhere to international standards for advanced passenger information. “When it comes to security, while today’s aviation security measures work, it is an archaic one-size-fits-all platform that comes at great cost to airlines, airports, authorities, and passengers. Imposing new and/ or additional measures, or simply replacing screening equipment, are not robust enough to ensure security and facilitation effectiveness and will not be adequate to cater to the increased number of travellers in the coming years,” IATA added. IATA is an association representing 290 of the world’s airlines, accounting for 82 percent of the total air traffic around the globe.