Open to giving 100% stake in 6 airports to pvt operators: Govt
New Delhi: The government is open to giving 100 percent stake to private parties in six select airports, including Kolkata and Chennai, official sources said Thursday.
The Civil Aviation Ministry will issue a Request For Qualification (RFQ) document in a few days for Chennai and Lucknow airports. The RFQ for the other four -- Jodhpur, Guwahati, Ahmedabad and Kolkata--would be issued in the next few weeks, they said.
The Ministry had earlier proposed to privatise the airports at Chennai, Kolkata, Ahmedabad, Jaipur, Lucknow and Guwahati which were modernised by the Airports Authority of India (AAI).
Airports would be given on the concession basis to the private parties for a period of 30 years and AAI may not have equity participation as "we are open to giving 100 percent stake to private parties", they said.
AAI, during the 30-year period, will continue to get revenue share which will be decided on the basis of discussions held with the prospective bidders, they said.
Asked why AAI, which has spent thousands of crore for modernisation and development, won't have equity participation, the sources said even in existing private airports, AAI has no say in the operation and management. So, why should AAI put in equity, they asked.
AAI has 26 percent share in private airports of Delhi and Mumbai and 13 percent in Hyderabad and Bangalore.
Once finalised by the government, RFQ would be issued by the Key Infrastructure Development (KID) Cell of AAI.
After RFQ, which is a response-seeking process to help identify the participants for the bidding, Request For Interest (RFI) would be issued. RFQ would include the broad parameters of the privatisation process.
After criticism from various quarters including the global airlines' body IATA, the privatisation plans were dropped and instead, the Ministry decided to allow Indian and foreign private companies to run these airports on management contracts on a revenue-share basis.
AAI modernised Kolkata and Chennai airports at a cost of Rs 2,325 crore and Rs 2,015 crore respectively and it had upgraded the infrastructure at remaining airports at sizable costs.