Be a PRO & get up to 50% off on select brands. Explore Now

Govt introduces bill to amend definition of 'major airport' in Lok Sabha

Government has decided to club or pair profitable and non-profitable airports, which could be offered in public-private partnership mode as a package to the prospective bidder.

March 24, 2021 / 05:59 PM IST

The Centre today introduced the Airports Economic Regulatory Authority of India (Amendment) Bill, 2021 in the Lok Sabha which proposes to amend the definition of 'major airport' to include the tariff aspect for other groups of airports.

Civil Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri on March 24 introduced the bill aiming to enable the development of both smaller and larger airports in public-private partnership mode.

The tariff aspect is expected to encourage the development of smaller airports and bring them under the purview of the Airports Economic Regulatory Authority.

The Airports Economic Regulatory Authority of India has been determining the tariffs of aeronautical charges at major airports in the country and is expected to now do so for smaller airports as well.

In the latest amendment, the government has decided to club or pair profitable and non-profitable airports, which could be offered in public-private partnership mode as a package to the prospective bidder.

Close

COVID-19 Vaccine

Frequently Asked Questions

View more
How does a vaccine work?

A vaccine works by mimicking a natural infection. A vaccine not only induces immune response to protect people from any future COVID-19 infection, but also helps quickly build herd immunity to put an end to the pandemic. Herd immunity occurs when a sufficient percentage of a population becomes immune to a disease, making the spread of disease from person to person unlikely. The good news is that SARS-CoV-2 virus has been fairly stable, which increases the viability of a vaccine.

How many types of vaccines are there?

There are broadly four types of vaccine — one, a vaccine based on the whole virus (this could be either inactivated, or an attenuated [weakened] virus vaccine); two, a non-replicating viral vector vaccine that uses a benign virus as vector that carries the antigen of SARS-CoV; three, nucleic-acid vaccines that have genetic material like DNA and RNA of antigens like spike protein given to a person, helping human cells decode genetic material and produce the vaccine; and four, protein subunit vaccine wherein the recombinant proteins of SARS-COV-2 along with an adjuvant (booster) is given as a vaccine.

What does it take to develop a vaccine of this kind?

Vaccine development is a long, complex process. Unlike drugs that are given to people with a diseased, vaccines are given to healthy people and also vulnerable sections such as children, pregnant women and the elderly. So rigorous tests are compulsory. History says that the fastest time it took to develop a vaccine is five years, but it usually takes double or sometimes triple that time.

View more
Show

Developing more number of airports through public-private partnership mode would expand air connectivity to relatively remote and far-flung areas.

Therefore, the government has decided to club or pair airports having profitable and non-profitable airports which could be offered in public-private partnership mode as a package to the prospective bidders.

The move to introduce the bill comes just a month after the government said it plans to privatize loss-making airports along with profitable ones in the next round of airport privatization.

In the upcoming round, the government expects to hand over the operations and management of the airports at Amritsar, Varanasi, Bhubaneswar, Indore, Raipur, and Tiruchirappalli to private operators under the public-private partnership mode.

In 2019, the government had amendment the definition of a 'major airport' to mean any airport with annual passenger throughput of over 3.5 mln.

However, the earlier amendment does not provide for the determination of tariffs for a group of airports, those airports that currently have low traffic potential or are loss-making are not expected to attract reasonable competitive bids.

The Airports Economic Regulatory Authority of India Act, 2008, was aimed at enabling the Airports Economic Regulatory Authority to regulate tariffs and other charges for aeronautical services at airports and to monitor performance standards.

 
Yaruqhullah Khan
first published: Mar 24, 2021 05:59 pm

stay updated

Get Daily News on your Browser
Sections