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Ajit calls for more FDI from US aviation sector

Ajit calls for more FDI from US aviation sector
Highlights

Ajit Calls For More FDI From US Aviation Sector. Asserting that India has taken significant steps in making air travel affordable, Civil Aviation...

Says govt has taken enough measures to provide air connectivity to even interior locations.

India requires investment of $12 bn in aviation sector during 12th plan of which $9 billion is expected from private sector. This includes, construction of new airports, expansion and modernisation of existing airports and development of low cost airports.

Washington: Asserting that India has taken significant steps in making air travel affordable, Civil Aviation Minister Ajit Singh on Thursday called for more foreign direct investment (FDI) from America in the country which now offers immense business opportunities.

“The Indian Government has taken a number of measures to make affordable air connectivity to remote and interior areas of the country in Tier II and Tier III cities of India,” Singh said in his address to the 4th India-US Aviation Summit which is being attended by top officials from the two countries’ aviation sector. Singh said the two countries share common values and are strategically moving towards closer ties.

Claiming that India is poised to become the third largest aviation market, the minister said, the Indian airport system is gearing to handle 360 million of domestic and 85 international passengers by 2020.

Accordingly the country require an investment of $12 billion in the airport sector in the 12th plan of which $9 billion is expected from the private sector. This includes, construction of new airports, expansion and modernisation of existing airports and development of low cost airports, the minister said.

Recounting the policy changes India made to attract FDI, Singh said, the most important decision taken would be to allow 49 per cent FDI by foreign airlines in Indian carriers. The results of these policies are already visible as two airlines AirAsia and Tata-SIA are going to start their services in near future, he added.

Participating in the summit, the US Transportation Secretary, Anthony Fox said, the US is actively involved in supporting the growth of business aviation. He also called for reducing emission in transportations while continuing to grow the economy. "Asia and the US are growing ever more connected through the skies, and India is an important part of that connection. With Minister Singh's efforts to develop Indian aviation, the connection between our nations has grown even stronger," he said.

"Indian aviation is experiencing dramatic growth across the board, from the emergence of new carriers to a growing middle class ready to take travel by air. Recent changes to the regulatory environment are another encouraging sign," Fox said.

Fox added the US is committed to working with its counterparts through technical assistance and other avenues to make air travel in India as safe as possible.

During the three-day summit, officials and corporate sector leaders from the two countries are expected to have high-level dialogue on major issues relating to air traffic management and control in India, and promote US technical solutions to support India's growing aviation market.

The summit is held as part of the US-India Aviation Cooperation Program (ACP) and the Indian Government. The meeting will build on the results of previous Summits held every two years in the US and India, with the goal of assisting India in identifying advanced US technology that will support development of India's aviation infrastructure.

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