x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 24 July 2017

India’s aviation sector seeks US investment

India is seeking more investment from the United States in its aviation sector, as it aims to become the third largest market globally by passenger numbers by 2020.

India is seeking more investment from the United States in its aviation sector, as it aims to become the third largest market globally by passenger numbers by 2020.

“Considering the growth prospects of air traffic, potential for large-scale acquisition of aircrafts by the airlines and substantial investment projections, [the] Indian civil aviation market offers tremendous opportunities for US industries to invest in India,” said Ajit Singh, the civil aviation minister, speaking at the US-India Aviation Summit in Washington last week.

He said India was expanding its air transport network and the growing role of the private sector had fuelled a rise in air traffic in the subcontinent.

“India is currently the ninth largest aviation market handling 121 million domestic and 41 million international passengers with more than 85 international airlines operating to India and five Indian carriers connecting over 40 countries,” Mr Singh said.

“The Indian airport system is poised to handle 336 million domestic and 85 million international passengers by 2020, making India the third largest aviation market.”

By 2020, the country’s commercial fleet size is expected to more than double to 1,000 aircraft, worth US$45 billion, compared with 400 today, he said. The “Indian government has envisaged investment of investment of $12.1bn in the airports sector during the 12th-plan period [a five-year plan that runs from 2012 to 2017], of which $9.3bn is expected to come from the private sector for construction of new airports, expansion, and modernisation of existing airports and development of low cost airports”, he added.

Total bilateral trade in goods between India and the US reached $62.8bn last year, with aircraft, spacecraft, and their parts being some of the major items of export between the two countries.

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