India to build 100 new airports to boost traffic

It is estimated the project could cost upwards of US$20 billion

The construction of the airports is expected to finish in 2024
The construction of the airports is expected to finish in 2024

India has announced plans to construct 100 greenfield airports by 2024 in an effort to grow passenger and cargo traffic.

Sister publication Arabian Business first covered the news, noting the expansion plans will help air connectivity within the country also.

Arabian Business spoke to a handful of experts in the industry, coming to the conclusion the plans will especially help the India-Gulf sector, the busiest route from India.

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Aviation sector expert and former partner, PwC India, Dhiraj Mathur told Arabian Business: “India will be embarking on the next phase of growth in air travel, with the Union Budget 2020 announcing a massive expansion plan in the country’s airport infrastructure.”

Mathur continued: “Air passenger traffic in India has more than doubled in the last decade, and the coming decade could see even higher growth considering the recent trend of robust air passenger growth and outward tourism from India.”

Upgrades to existing Indian airports, and the introduction of new ones will benefit many Gulf-based airlines expand operations in the country. Arabian Business highlighted that Dubai and Abu Dhabi in the UAE are two key connection points for Indian travellers heading to Europe or America.

Former airport sector analyst with ICRA, Harsh Jagnani shared: “The new airport construction plans will have a multiplier effect for the sector, as the network expansion will trigger significant growth in the operations as well as air passenger traffic growth in the existing airport network in a state.”

“The India-Middle East sector will be the biggest beneficiary of the expected air passenger traffic from India, the sector being the busiest among the international routes from India,” Jagnani said.

Industry experts estimate the construction of these 100 airports will cost the country approximately US$15 - $20 billion.

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