Tuesday, October 4, 2022

More airports to be privatised, says MoCA Joint Secretary

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New Delhi: Usha Padhee, Joint Secretary, Ministry of Civil Aviation, said on Tuesday that the government will continue with privatisation in the aviation sector and more airports will be privatised soon. Speaking at the ‘Smart Safe Secure Skies’, organised by FICCI jointly with Thales, Padhee said that the Indian civil aviation sector is growing at a rapid pace and is attracting a lot of investment, particularly from the private sector.

‘More airports to be privatised’

“Government is, for the first time, talking about disinvestment of Air India and Pawan Hans Ltd. We have already privatised some airports and more airports are in line. Three have been awarded, few more are in line. It is a continuous trend,” she said. With just 7 percent penetration in a country of 1.2 billion, Padhee added that about 300 million to 400 million middle class in India are still waiting to fly. “Just one ticket per passenger in a year will take India ahead of the UK, the world’s third-largest civil aviation market,” said Padhee.

‘Next two decades are going to be a growth story’

“Be confident that the next two decades are going to be a growth story,” Padhee said, adding that the sector, which faces competing demands from its different stakeholders, needs the ecosystem to work as one integrated model.

Anti-drone specifications to be out within a week: BCAS

Maheshwar Dayal, Deputy Director General, Bureau of Civil Aviation Security (BCAS), said that the pressures of growth, commercial interests of the industry and pressures of security are always at loggerheads and striking a balance has always been a difficult task for BCAS. “BCAS is about to release anti-drone specifications. The technical specifications of all the gadgets and systems at Indian airports are issued by BCAS. So, for anti-drone, we are about to release the specifications in less than a week’s time,” he said.

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‘DGCA has surpassed its US, UK counterparts’

Anand Stanley, Chairman, FICCI Civil Aviation Committee and President and MD, India and South Asia, Airbus, said that ‘Smart Safe Secure Skies’ is a global event and the decision to select India as its venue this year reflects India’s importance on the global landscape. Speaking about India’s large and growing economy, Stanley said that Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA), has surpassed the American and European regulators in certain concepts related to safety and other areas that were followed and adopted by other countries. “The spirit of aerospace has always been innovation, but the soul of aviation is in its safety. No one in this industry (OEM, company or player), breaks the code of honour that we have on safety. It is this sanctity we have to present and preserve today,” he added.

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