Flying out from Delhis refurbished airport is going to increase the cost for domestic and international passengers by Rs 200 and Rs 1,300 respectively,effective from March 1,2009. The cash-strapped Delhi International Airport Limited (DIAL),a GMR-led consortium,was given the go-ahead by the government today to collect the airport development fee (ADF) for three years.
Issuing strict instructions,the civil aviation ministry has directed DIAL to collect the amount,deposit it in a separate escrow account and use the fund for developing transferable aeronautical assets only,under the supervision of the government and the Airports Authority of India. The aeronautical assets would be transferred by AAI to DIAL when the lease of the IGI Airport expires. The ADF collections are expected to cover an estimated shortfall of Rs 1,827 crore. In addition,the shareholders advances amounting to Rs 1,250 crore would be retained in the project to fund expected increase in the project costs,a ministry spokesperson said.
The ADF,which cannot exceed total collections of Rs 1,827 crore,will be reviewed within six months of its commencement by the government or the regulator,Airports Economic Regulatory Authority (AERA). With the levy of an ADF,DIAL will be the only airport operator to collect the fee on a temporary basis. Earlier,the government had allowed the operators of new airports at Hyderabad and Bangalore to charge a user development fee (UDF) from departing domestic and international passengers. While the Bangalore airport charges Rs 260 and Rs1,070 as UDF from departing domestic and international passengers respectively,the Hyderabad airport charges Rs 375 and Rs 1,000 as UDF from departing domestic and international passengers.