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Parliament passes bill to increase threshold of passenger traffic for major airports

ANI | Updated: Aug 02, 2019 23:19 IST

New Delhi [India], Aug 2 (ANI): The Parliament on Friday passed The Airports Economic Regulatory Authority of India (Amendment) Bill, 2019 that increases the threshold of annual passenger traffic for major airports to over 35 lakh.
The Bill was passed by the Lok Sabha after a reply by Civil Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri.
The bill, which seeks to amend the Airports Economic Regulatory Authority of India Act, 2008, had earlier been passed by Rajya Sabha.
The minister said that privatization was undertaken in 2006, accounts for 34 per cent of traffic while privatization of six airports that the government was doing accounts for 6 per cent traffic.
Replying to queries of members, he said the government was committed to privatization of Air India and the alternate mechanism will be pushed very early.
He said passenger traffic was growing fast. The penetration of the civil aviation sector was seven per cent and it was growing at 17 per cent, he said.
At present, an airport with annual passenger traffic of 15 lakh or more is defined as a major airport and tariff at such airports are determined by AERA. The Bill raises the threshold to 35 lakh.
The minister said that 16 major airports will be in the ambit of AERA and 17 were excluded which will not go to private players but will be administered by the ministry.
The bill provides that AERA will not determine tariff structures and development fees in certain cases including those where such tariff amounts were a part of the bid document on the basis of which the airport operations were awarded.
AERA will be consulted by the concessioning authority before incorporating such tariffs.
The debate saw many members raising demand for improving connectivity to their constituencies. (ANI)

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