• Changi, AAI looking for mutually acceptable terms: Mahesh Sharma

    Union Minister Mahesh Sharma today said efforts are being made to work out “mutually acceptable” terms for AAI and Singapore’s Changi Airport with respect to operating Ahmedabad and Jaipur airports.

    The latest development comes after Airports Authority of India’s (AAI) terminated discussions following its assessment that the Changi Airport’s proposal would not be commercially viable.

    The proposal to have Changi Airport to operate and maintain Ahmedabad and Jaipur aerodromes was mooted during Modi’s visit to Singapore in November 2015.

    “We have conveyed (to Changi Airport) that their terms and conditions are not favourable. We have asked them to make the conditions mutually acceptable,” Sharma, the Minister of State for Civil Aviation, said today.

    He said AAI would go ahead only if the proposal is “suitable” and in case that does not materialise, then an alternative would be looked at.

    According to sources, Changi Airport was allegedly demanding a very high share in revenues from the two airports which was not acceptable to AAI.

    With regard to Ahmedabad and Jaipur airports, AAI had inked a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Singapore Cooperation Enterprise (SCE) during Modi’s visit to the island nation.

    In January, the Union Cabinet had also given its ex-post facto approval to the MoU.

    Earlier this month, an AAI official said it could not reach “mutually agreeable terms” with the Changi Airport on the proposal.

    SCE had nominated Changi Airport for the proposed project.

    Changi Airport Group (Singapore) Pte Ltd runs the Changi airport in Singapore.

    Under the MoU, both parties were to cooperate in planning and development of Ahmedabad and Jaipur airports besides other aspects including traffic and commercial development, service quality and operations and management.

    Globally, limited O&M (Operation & Maintenance) contract models are prevalent for the entire airport operations, the statement said, adding the AAI has no previous experience in awarding O&M contract model of terminal buildings to other entities. De’Vondre Campbell Jersey

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