Sunday, December 31, 2017

UDAN-backed aviation sector seeks new heights in 2018

Sometimes, numbers tell a story better than words. Sample this: domestic air travel demand surged to over 1 crore passengers in November 2017, a nearly 17% growth over the same period in 2016, according to the Directorate General of Civil Aviation. In the 11 months of 2017, a record 10.6 crore people flew within the country compared with 9.9 crore during the whole of 2016. Now this is set to rise higher.

The Narendra Modi government is aggressively pushing its regional connectivity scheme, UDAN — Ude Desh ki Aam Nagrik (Let the common man fly) — which makes flying accessible to millions of Indians by encouraging airlines to fly to under-served airports.

Under the initiative, airlines will have to sell some of their seats (9-40) at no more than Rs 2,500 per hour of flying, for which they will be compensated by the government.

Five airlines were allotted 128 routes in the first phase of UDAN in March. The government has also given the go-ahead for 19 Private Labels Owned by Offline and Online Retailers Backed by a government scheme, flying is set to become more common Aviation Will Fly Even Higher new airports and reviving 50 unserved/under-served airports and airstrips.

By 2036, India is estimated to have 48 crore flyers, which will be more than that of Japan ( just under 22.5 crore) and Germany ( just over 20 crore) combined. There is another statistic that underscores the Indian aviation boom: India will overtake the UK to become the third largest air passenger market by 2025, according to a recent report by the International Air Transport Association (IATA).
"UDAN scheme seeks to promote regional connectivity by serving the unserved and under-served airports," said Vice-President M Venkaiah Naidu, while inaugurating the 2nd Aero Expo India 2017. Connecting tier-II cities, pilgrim towns and historic places with the wider air routes is important for boosting tourism and business travel, Naidu said, adding that India became the world's fastest growing domestic travel market for the 22nd straight month, recording a 26.6% year-on-year growth in January 2017.
30/12/17 Economic Times

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