India: Adani wins bids to operate 5 AAI airports

AAI official have revealed that bids put by Adani group were «very aggressive» as compared to other bidders.

he ports-to-edible oil Adani Group has emerged the winner in the privatisation of five out of six airports put up by the government, outbidding a slew of national and international competitors including GMR, AMP Capital and the National Investment and Infrastructure Fund (NIIF).

The Ahmedabad-based group won the right to upgrade and operate the airports of Lucknow, Jaipur, Thiruvananthapuram, Mangaluru and Ahmedabad by mounting aggressive bids which offered a higher payment for passenger fee to the Airports Authority of India (AAI). The Adani Group will get to manage these airports for 50 years if its offers are approved by the government.

Adani Enterprises emerged the highest bidder on the basis of share of revenue offered per passenger. Bids were also received from established players such as GMR Airports, Autostrade Indian Infrastructure Development Pvt Ltd, PNC Infratech Ltd, NIIF & Zurich Airport International AG, AMP Capital, I-Investment Ltd, KSIDC and Cochin International Airport.

Keeping Airport Charges Low
The revenue per passenger model is different from the revenue share model, which had led to spike in airport charges at airports like Delhi and Mumbai. The government expects this model to keep airport charges under control.

Source: The Economic Times. India.

Airport modernisation: New model raises hopes of a take-off

Having failed repeatedly to partially privatise the Ahmedabad and Jaipur airports, with sweetening of conditions proving inadequate for investment, the Union government has changed tack and opted for the public private partnership (PPP) model to redevelop the Ahmedabad, Jaipur and four other airports.
More than 12 years after the Delhi and Mumbai airports were privatised, the facilities at Lucknow, Jaipur, Ahmedabad, Mangaluru, Trivandrum and Guwahati would be going under the hammer in the coming weeks, a move that has been welcomed by experts. “We should see good participation from both domestic and international players,” says Jagannarayan Padmanabhan, director and practice lead at CRISIL Infrastructure Advisory.

Under the new framework the ministry of civil aviation has devised, a longer concession period of 50 years is being offered to prospective developers for greater certainty of returns, besides the elimination of the contentious revenue-sharing bidding criterion. In a departure from the first round of airport privatisation, the bids would be assessed on the basis of the highest monthly per-passenger fee offered to the Airports Authority of India (AAI).
Airport operators have often complained of the high fund outgo under the revenue-sharing model as it is based on gross revenue instead of profits, with the revenues to be shared in case of losses as well. It also limits the operators’ capacity to invest in expansion work. On the other hand, the passenger fee would be decided at the time the contract is awarded, continuing over a five-year period.
“A longer concession tenure and replacement of the revenue-sharing parameter would make the projects more viable. This should help address the need to build world-class airports in non-metro cities,” holds Satyan Nayar, general secretary of the Association of Private Airport Operators.
The six airports chosen for redevelopment could attract over $1-bn investment, it is estimated. “Each of the airports needs an investment of $200 mn,” Padmanabhan points out. Several domestic and overseas investment entities including infrastructure funds are said to be keen on the upcoming investment opportunity.
Significantly, the GVK group which operates the Mumbai airport had shown interest in redeveloping the Ahmedabad and Jaipur airports under the old tender. “We would be interested in participating in the bids. We are in the process of evaluating the bid conditions,” says a private airport developer.
In an attempt to fast-track the process, the Centre is looking to award the contracts by February-end. However, with the general elections scheduled for May this year, this may prove a tall ask — CAPA India has described the government’s timeline for airport privatisation as aggressive.

The consultancy firm had highlighted that India’s aviation sector needs investment to the tune of $45 bn by 2030. With India being the world’s fastest growing aviation market, its airports are grappling with serious capacity constraints. According to the AAI, 11 of the 25 major airports have been handling more passengers than their designed capacity. And many other airports would have breached their capacity limits in the next five years.

Source: Financial Express

Bengaluru International Airport to undertake expansion programme

The Kempegowda International Airport in Bengaluru, India, has plans to undertake a massive Rs130bn ($1.8bn) expansion programme.

This expansion will see construction of a new terminal, a second runway, access roads and internal road infrastructure, and a multi-modal transport hub.

PTI quoted Bangalore International Airport Infrastructure Ltd (BIAL) CEO Hari Marar as saying that the second phase programme includes a component of Rs20bn ($284m) interest.

Construction costs of the terminal will be around Rs35bn ($497m).

The expansion project is expected to be completed by 2021.

Source: Airport-technology

One of the original Indian airport concessionaires now seeks to take on Thiruvananthapuram concession

India’s Cochin International Airport Ltd (CIAL) has revealed it plans to bid on a tender to operate Thiruvananthapuram Trivandrum International Airport under the terms of a 50-year concession contract.

Thiruvananthapuram’s Trivandrum International is one of six airports to be privatised by way of a P3 deal in India;
The airport is about 200 km south of Cochin, India’s very first P3 deal; now that airport wants to take on Thiruvananthapuram’s concession;

Serving the city of Kochi in Kerala state Cochin International Airport was the first airport in India developed under a public-private partnership (PPP or P3) model and was funded by a variety of public and private sector shareholders including the Government of Kerala (the largest at 33.3%), Airports Authority of India (which remains a fixture in all the Indian airport privatisations), Air India, various banks and nearly 10,000 non-resident Indians from 30 countries.

In what is a more diverse concession ownership pattern than at any of the ‘big four’ of Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore and Hyderabad, CIAL can be considered to have been a success. Cochin International Airport is the busiest and largest airport in the state of Kerala and in 2017 it catered for almost two thirds (63.86%) of all air passenger movements in the state. It is also the fourth busiest airport in India as measured by international traffic and the seventh busiest overall.

In 2017, the airport handled around 9.7 million passengers and will have passed through the 10 million barrier in 2018 despite the growth rate stalling and then reducing from a peak of 21% in 2015 to just 5.7% in the first 11 months of 2018. It is the major gateway to the tourist-oriented state both domestically and internationally.

The largest airline by capacity is Indigo, at over 40%. The LCC Air India Express, while a comparatively minor player, is headquartered in the city. The airport operates three passenger and one cargo terminals with Terminal 3 one of the largest terminals in India.

So CIAL’s credentials for operating airports are well established but what could it bring to the Thiruvananthapuram Trivandrum International Airport (TTIA)? TTIA is around 200 km to the south of Cochin. Its passenger numbers are a little less than half of those at the larger airport. Passenger growth increased to over 14% in 2016 but has since slipped to 9.9% (2018 first 11 months).

The Airports Authority of India-owned airport is the second busiest in Kerala after Cochin and the fourteenth busiest in India. One peculiar feature is that it is the closest to the sea of all Indian airports. While also serving tourism it is close to technological parks and to the Vizhinjam International Seaport which is under construction.

Its capacity on foreign routes is actually considerably higher, at 54.4%, than at Cochin (39.2%) and the distribution of seat capacity by airline bears similarities to that at Cochin. It lacks the same degree of impact from Emirates Airline, Etihad Airways and Qatar Airways but those services are in place along with selected Southeast Asian airlines. Scoot for example will replace Silk Air in 2019.

It is a peculiar situation and one that is typical in India where the red-tape-bound privatisation process is something of a mish-mash. If CIAL is successful it would leave both airports partially under the control of AAI and a variety of private sector organisations, with CIAL in overall control, and competing with each other for the same foreign tourist and business traffic.

Source: The Blue Swan. CAPA