• Need to bring down cost of leasing: Aviation Secretary

    The Civil Aviation Policy is just the beginning and the government needs to work on how to reduce the cost of leasing aircraft, Aviation Secretary RN Choubey said on Thursday.

    “The civil aviation policy is just the beginning. We wish to stay ahead of the growth curve and if we fall behind the growth curve, for example as it happened in case of urban development in the country, there will be aviation chaos in skies, airports,” Choubey said at an Assocham event here.

    On the cost of leasing, he said, “If the cost leasing remains high either because of capital or any other procedural requirement, the regional connectivity may find difficulty in taking off.”

    Convert unused airports into SEZs?

    On the policy front, Choubey said that people have been coming forward with ideas. He mentioned an idea he received which suggested converting some unused airports into special economic zones where aircraft leasing companies can park their planes and showcase them to potential customers.

    Another idea that he received was “the possibility of utilising certain unused airports for the purpose of parking aircraft and even use aerodromes for plane-breaking or dismantling of old aircraft”.

    The Cabinet on June 15 had approved the Civil Aviation Policy which has scrapped the 5/20 rule for airlines. Moreover, the government aims to make flying more affordable by capping airfares at ?2,500 per hour stage length under Regional Connectivity Scheme at unserved airports. The cap will, however, apply only of a destination which is being connected is currently an unserved airport.

    The draft of the regional connectivity scheme will be out by the end of this month, he added. Allen Hurns Womens Jersey

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