Airport terminal establishes new benchmarks: PM
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Last Updated: Saturday, July 03, 2010, 13:35
New Delhi: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh today said regulatory and policy framework needs to be aligned with the requirements of the civil aviation industry to encourage serious investment in the sector that can absorb upto 120 billion dollars by 2020.

Inaugurating the new Terminal 3, a world class airport here, he said "we need to create safe, secure, efficient and environment-friendly systems conducive to healthy growth of the civil aviation sector."

The government was working to achieve these goals, he said adding the Directorate General of Civil Aviation is being strengthened. The Airport Economic Regulatory Authority has been set up as a regulator for the airport sector for monitoring issues like airport charges and service standards," he said.

Expressing happiness over completion of the terminal in a record time of 37 months, the Prime Minister said the airport terminal establishes new global bench marks and exemplifies country's resolve to bridge the infrastructure deficit.

It proved the success of the Public Private Partnership model in execution of large infrastructure projects, he said.

"India is the ninth largest aviation market in the world. Ten scheduled airlines are operating here compared to two in the 90s. During the same period the number of aircraft deployed by the airlines has increased by four times from 100 to 400," Singh said.

The Prime Minister pointed out that analysts predict that domestic traffic in India can increase up to 160 to 180 million passengers every year and international traffic to grow in excess of 50 million passengers by 2020.

With the worldwide ranking of Delhi airport improving from 101 in 2007 to 21 in 2010 in terms of service quality, Singh also hoped that the airport will shortly rank within the first 10 airports of the world.

One of the largest terminal in the world, the new environment-friendly airport which was constructed within 37 months can cater to over 34 million passengers every year.

Singh said that the new airport establishes a new global benchmark and stressed that "all concerned agencies should now focus on improving passenger connectivity between the city and the airport to fully leverage the potential of this terminal."

He said the terminal will use very high quality security systems which "will be a source of great comfort to airlines and passengers."

Emphasising on the need to rapidly improve country's physical infrastructure, he said, "this is one area where we have been lagging behind but I am confident that in the time to come we will achieve much more than in the past."

Praising the "impressive" new airport, UPA President Sonia Gandhi said quality is not something to be reserved for prestigious projects but should become "part and parcel of our design process for all our public projects including housing and other services".

"Providing rural and urban infrastructure efficiently and at the same time achieving high standards must remain our goal," she said.

Operations at the new integrated terminal would begin from the middle of this month with Air India and all international airlines shifting their operations from the existing terminal buildings.

Officials of DIAL said all international carriers, operating from Delhi, would shift their operations from the existing international terminal or T2 to T3 on July 14.

On July 30-31, the operations of all full service Indian carriers, including Air India, Jet Airways and Kingfisher, would shift along with their low-cost wings. The swanky T3 would also be "barrier free" to suit the requirements of passengers with "special needs or reduced mobility".


First Published: Saturday, July 03, 2010, 13:35

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