Budget 2018: Spicejet hails Jaitley, says it will benefit Indian aviation sector

WION Web Team
New Delhi, Delhi, IndiaUpdated: Feb 01, 2018, 05:24 PM IST

The scheme will insure 10 crore families or approximately 50 crore people, Jaitley said. Photograph:(WION)

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley's announcement on airport capacity increase over five times in his budget speech has been hailed by chairman and managing director Spicejet Ajay Singh. Singh said that the initiative has the potential to transform the Indian aviation sector and make India a global aviation ''superpower''.

"The initiative will help to connect smaller towns and cities and increase tourism and economic activity like never before," he added.

Seeking to provide a big push to the country's civil aviation sector, the finance minister announced an ambitious scheme, Nabh Nirman, to expand airport capacity by five times to 1 billion trips a year. 

Jaitley further said that in the last three years, the domestic air passenger traffic grew at 18 per cent per annum and our airline companies placed orders for more than 900 aircrafts.  

Regional connectivity scheme of UDAN (Ude Desh ka Aam Nagrik) initiated by the government last year shall connect 56 unserved airports and 31 unserved helipads across the country.

Operations have already started at 16 such airports. Jaitley said and added that due to these initiatives people wearing slippers are travelling by air.

Jaitley further added, "Airport Authority of India (AAI) has 124 airports. We propose to expand our airport capacity more than five times to handle a billion trips a year under a new initiative - NABH Nirman. The balance sheet of Airport Authority of India shall be leveraged to raise more resources for funding this expansion."