Panaji: Goa Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar on Friday said the actual work on greenfield international airport at Mopa would begin next year, after the procedures of obtaining environment impact assessment (EIA) and other tendering processes are completed.
"I can't give the exact date when work on new airport will start. But as per my time table, I will finish request for proposal (RFP) and EIA by May or June next year.
"If that happens the work on airport can start by September-October, next year," Parrikar told reporters after inaugurating the office of Union Tourism minister Sripad Naik in the state.
Goa government this week finalised and passed the Request for Qualification (RFQ) for the airport, notwithstanding the opposition for the project from a section of people in South district.
"RFQ is already loaded on the website," he said, adding that EIA is necessary for construction of airport and not for selection of the player (company which will construct the airport).
"If the player knows it in advance that unless EIA is completed he won?t be in picture than it is okay.. If someone is ready to take risk and get himself selected that is up to him," he added.
The Chief Minister said that the finalisation of order for the Greenfield project will happen only after EIA is obtained.
"But if you ask me frankly I see no reason for not getting EIA cleared. Preliminary EIA is done long back, now this one is detailed," Parrikar added.
He said the airport would be operated on Built Own Operate and Transfer (BOOT) basis and it would have different models of viability.
"For the operator, the main target is passengers. Anyone who gets involved in it will have to tie up with foreign operators to get the passengers," he said.
In addition, Parrikar said 381 acres of land would be given for commercial development. "No detailing has been done on commercial development. There will also be Maintenance and Research Operation and would be hub for cargo," he said.
The Greenfield airport also has a potential of becoming an airlines hub, he added.
Speaking on opposition to the new airport, Parrikar said
the state cannot depend on a single airstrip at Dabolim airport, which is managed by the Indian Navy.
"One airstrip for state of Goa can become a disaster. If there is any war type situation, the Indian Navy will take over 24 hours operation. It can?t be pure civilian airport," Parrikar said.
The chief minister rubbished the news that the Navy is being shifted to neighbouring Karwar town in Karnataka.
"Even if we presume that Navy is shifting it is a long process. There are factors like cost and time required to construct the new airport. It is going to be Rs 10,000- 15,000 crore project and it will take 10-15 years to built," he added.