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DIAL clarifies to IATA chief on airport charges

The AERA had approved DIAL an increase of 345 per cent in airport charges effective May 15, a move criticised by airlines and passengers.

New Delhi: Operator of Indira Gandhi International airport -- DIAL -- has contended that airport charges here are not the highest in the world, as claimed by IATA, in any segment except for the long-haul international flights in wide-body planes.

The GMR-led Delhi International Airport Limited (DIAL) objected to the International Air Transport Association (IATA) statement that after revision of airport charges by the Airport Economic Regulatory Authority (AERA), Delhi airport has become the world's costliest airport.

The AERA had approved DIAL an increase of 345 per cent in airport charges effective May 15, a move criticised by airlines and passengers.

In April, Albert Tjoeng, Assistant Director, Corporate Communications, Asia Pacific, IATA said this 345 per cent increase in charges would make Delhi the world's most expensive airport.

In a letter to IATA CEO Tony Tyler, DIAL Chief Finance Officer Siddhartha Kapur said "we do not agree with this statement as it doesn't reflect the actual state of affairs."

Quoting the report of consultancy firm LeighFisher India Pvt Ltd, formerly known as Jacobs Consultancy he said charges for domestic passengers at the Delhi airport, after the fee revision, continue to be the lowest among competitors across the globe.

He said airport charges of Indian airports were not increased in the past 10 years, except by a nominal 10 per cent in 2009, and were "historically low" and same for every airport in the country.

"After the comparative evaluation, you will appreciate that even with Airport Development Fee (ADF), which is strictly not an aeronautical charge but a pre-funding for a limited period of time, Delhi airport is not the highest in all segment except long haul international segment," Kapur said.

Of the total, 69 per cent passenger were domestic travellers and rest were international.

As per the report, before including ADF, Delhi airport stands at 23rd position out of 26 airports but after adding ADF, its rank moves up to 22nd place for short haul domestic flights operating with CRJ or ATR aircraft, while for long haul flights, operating with A320, Delhi moves to 15 place from 19, when ADF is included.

Among the 30 international airports, Delhi is placed at 9th position in terms of airport charges after including ADF for short haul flights with A320 type of aircraft, in medium-haul flights category, it is placed at 4th place.

"After including ADF, Delhi ranks first in the category of long haul flights operating with B777 aircraft. Earlier its position was 9th," Kapur said in the letter.


From Zee News

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