Gujarat govt. to develop Centres of Excellence for Skill Development in Aviation IndustryJuly 11, 2019
Ahmedabad: Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) in association with Gujarat State Aviation Infrastructure Company Limited, Dholera Industrial City Development Limited and Airports Authority of India, today organised the 2nd Gujarat Aviation Conclave, conference on business opportunities in the aviation sector at Ahmedabad, Gujarat. The one day power-packed conclave saw distinguished names from the aviation industry and policy makers converge on a single platform.
Speaking at the Inaugural Plenary, Mr Jai Prakash Shivahare, IAS, Managing Director, Dholera Industrial City Development Limited, said, “There is a need for second airport for Ahmedabad. Currently the terminal capacity of the Ahmedabad airport is to handle 7 million passengers per annum. However, last year, the city airport handled some 11 million passengers. Thus, AAI and Government of Gujarat have joined hands to start working for the second airport for Ahmedabad in Dholera. The land is already available, all the permissions are in place and we hope to start the work very soon. The distance is around 80km from Ahmedabad and NHAI is creating a 6-lane access controlled expressway to facilitate connectivity to this airport. This way, Government of Gujarat is proactive to create infrastructure for future requirements.”
Captain Ajay Chauhan, Director of Civil Aviation, Government of Gujarat, said, “The government is focussed on identifying land which can be used for future growth of airports. We have already started development of the Rajkot airport, which received the fastest clearances. We received environment clearances within 6 months and the project has been awarded in two years. The Government of Gujarat is also focussing a lot on Maintenance Repair and Operations (MRO) and we have a state of the art facility in Ahmedabad. Presently, we have done major maintenance of about 63 aircrafts from start to end. We plan to come up with similar centres in Rajkot and Ankleshwar.”
“For the growth of this sector, skill development is a key requirement. A lot of skilled youth will be required to make the workforce of the sector. We are tying up with Industrial Training Institutes (ITIs) and Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs), and National Cadet Corps (NCC), to bring up new courses and new aviation institutes, where youth can get training. We are also trying to create some centres of excellence as well in which students will get training for creating high-tech equipment and design of the aircraft. Additionally, GIFT City is also trying to set up a centre for leasing out and aircraft financing in India. In fact, our budget for the aviation sector has constantly grown. In 2012, the budget was merely Rs 10-12 crore which is now Rs 430 crore” added Captain Ajay Chauhan.
Mr. Siddharth Kapur, CEO, Airports Business, Adani Group, said, “Today airports face major capacity challenges. Airports like Chennai would get constrained very fast and the government needs to decide about the next phase of airport infrastructure development in Chennai. These are critical issues. If airports face capacity challenges, airlines which have got in the next few years some thousand aircrafts on order, there will be a huge issue of parking these aircrafts. These are very serious challenges. In the first phase of privatisation, almost Rs 35,000 crore were invested by the private sector, for the privatisation of airports in Mumbai, Hyderabad, Bengaluru and Delhi.”
Speaking on the privatisation of airports, Mr. Siddharth Kapur said, “Privatisation is a good thing. The government after a long time has got the model of PPP airports quite right. The kind of response that has come for the airports has been stupendous, despite the constraint of a short bidding time. Privatisation gets money in the hands of Airports Authority of India (AAI), which in turn can use this cash to deepen the airport infrastructure in the country and boost air connectivity in the country.”
Air Marshal, RK Dhir, Advisor – Defence & Aerospace, Government in Gujarat said, “We have to create an ecosystem for defence and aviation sector. Towards that ecosystem, we are trying our best to implement the policies that are rolled out by the government. The rest of the ancillary industry is very well developed around Ahmedabad towards Sanand. On this axis, we aim to create certain hubs as industries are coming forward to support the defence and aviation sector. Going forward, we are looking to create an ancillary hub in Sanand area and helping out smaller industries that are coming into defence.”
Mr Raju Shah, Chairman, CII Gujarat State Council & Chairman, Harsha Engineering Limited, said, “Finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced during her budgetary speech that India will soon enter into the business of aircraft financing and leasing. This is a great opportunity for Gujarat. Gujarat International Finance-Tec (GIFT) City is an ideal hub for establishing the aircraft financing and leasing business. It cannot just help earn a lot of foreign exchange but also give an edge to the aviation companies in India.”
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