Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Oommen Chandy Says , Kerala will push low-cost airline


Kerala has not given up on a proposal to start an airline of its own, particularly to provide low-cost options to its vast diaspora in the Gulf, and will soon pursue this with the central government, Chief Minister Oommen Chandy has said.
"We are at the moment concentrating on our fourth international airport at Kannur. Once that is done, we will pursue the airline option. We have not given up on the idea of a low-cost carrier," Chandy said at an interaction with IANS journalists during a visit to the agency's head office here Monday evening.
"We have also brought down the minimum level of investment in the Kannur airport project to Rs.50,000 from Rs.200,100 for individual investors," Chandy, who assumed office for the second time on May 18 said, adding this was a major request among many investors.
The project, under public-private partnership, is being set up by a consortium in which 26 percent of the equity is with the government, 23 percent with public sector units, two percent with other institutions and the remaining 49 percent with private players.
The airport is expected to cater to an annual traffic of more than one million international passengers and 300,000 domestic passengers as per 2009-2010 estimates and will also serve as an air cargo hub for perishables like flowers, vegetables, fruit and seafood.
Home to idyllic beaches, Kannur in the northern part of Kerala is among 10 best cities in India to live in, as per research firm Indicus Analytics, and 13 percent of its population is employed overseas. The project is coming up on a 2,000-acre area and expected to start operations in 2013.
Kerala currently has international airports at Thiruvananthapuram, Kochi and Kozhikode. Kerala has around four million of its diaspora living outside and the bulk of them reside in the Gulf countries.
Speaking about the airline project, Chandy said the previous United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government had posed three conditions for overseas operations -- a fleet of five planes, five years of domestic operations and no operations to the Gulf.
"We said Air India Express with just two planes was allowed. Within three months, it got permission to fly to the Gulf. They said it is an Air India subsidiary. We said, okay we accept, but you also have to accept this -- this is a state government airline," Chandy said.
During the free-wheeling interaction, Chandy also said his government will soon apply its mind on the issue of promoting the concept of Islamic banking in the state, which believes in sharing profits and bans levy of interest, to fund infrastructure.
In February this year, the Kerala High Court had given a green signal to Al Baraka, a company registered under the tenets of Sharia with investment from a state-run firm, to operate a financial institution based on the principles of Islamic banking.
The state hoped to rope in funds from institutions that follow the Sharia law. "That proposal was there during the previous government. We have not decided on further things. But we have also not given up. Within this short period of our regime, we had not applied our minds. But we will pursue it," Chandy said. Muslims constitute 24-25 percent of Kerala's 32 million population.

Kannur airport Talks

While returning from the Air Port after seeing off a relative, I went to my son-inlaw’s home near the Guest House at around 8.30 pm. As he was not there, I went to the guest house for a refreshment and happened to see Achuthanandan getting out of the car. We shook hands and talked for a few minutes. Nothing more happened.SOURCE: IBN LIVE 2011-11-26 08:48:00

While returning from the Air Port after seeing off a relative, I went to my son-inlaw’s home near the Guest House at around 8.30 pm. As he was not there, I went to the guest house for a refreshment and happened to see Achuthanandan getting out of the car. We shook hands and talked for a few minutes. Nothing more happened.SOURCE: IBN LIVE 2011-11-26 08:13:00

That proposal was there during the previous government. We have not decided on further things. But we have also not given up. Within this short period of our regime, we had not applied our minds. But we will pursue it.SOURCE: INDIAVISION 2011-11-22 14:00:00

We said Air India Express with just two planes was allowed. Within three months, it got permission to fly to the Gulf. They said it is an Air India subsidiary. We said, okay we accept, but you also have to accept this -- this is a state government airline.SOURCE: INDIAVISION 2011-11-22 14:00:00

We have also brought down the minimum level of investment in the Kannur airport project to Rs.50,000 from Rs.200,100 for individual investors.SOURCE: INDIAVISION 2011-11-22 14:00:00

We are at the moment concentrating on our fourth international airport at Kannur. Once that is done, we will pursue the airline option. We have not given up on the idea of a low-cost carrier.SOURCE: INDIAVISION 2011-11-22 14:00:00

That proposal was there during the previous government. We have not decided on further things. But we have also not given up. Within this short period of our regime, we had not applied our minds. But we will pursue it.SOURCE: NEW KERALA 2011-11-22 13:59:00

We said Air India Express with just two planes was allowed. Within three months, it got permission to fly to the Gulf. They said it is an Air India subsidiary. We said, okay we accept, but you also have to accept this -- this is a state government airline.SOURCE: NEW KERALA 2011-11-22 13:59:00

We have also brought down the minimum level of investment in the Kannur airport project to Rs.50,000 from Rs.200,100 for individual investors.SOURCE: NEW KERALA 2011-11-22 13:59:00

We are at the moment concentrating on our fourth international airport at Kannur. Once that is done, we will pursue the airline option. We have not given up on the idea of a low-cost carrier.SOURCE: NEW KERALA 2011-11-22 13:59:00

That proposal was there during the previous government. We have not decided on further things. But we have also not given up. Within this short period of our regime, we had not applied our minds. But we will pursue it.SOURCE: WEBINDIA123 2011-11-22 13:53:00

We said Air India Express with just two planes was allowed. Within three months, it got permission to fly to the Gulf. They said it is an Air India subsidiary. We said, okay we accept, but you also have to accept this -- this is a state government airline.SOURCE: WEBINDIA123 2011-11-22 13:53:00

We have also brought down the minimum level of investment in the Kannur airport project to Rs.50,000 from Rs.200,100 for individual investors.SOURCE: WEBINDIA123 2011-11-22 13:53:00

We are at the moment concentrating on our fourth international airport at Kannur. Once that is done, we will pursue the airline option. We have not given up on the idea of a low-cost carrier.SOURCE: WEBINDIA123 2011-11-22 13:53:00

We said Air India Express with just two planes was allowed. Within three months, it got permission to fly to the Gulf. They said it is an Air India subsidiary. We said, okay we accept, but you also have to accept this -- this is a state government airline..SOURCE: ONEINDIA 2011-11-22 11:27:00

We have also brought down the minimum level of investment in the Kannur airport project to Rs 50,000 from Rs 200,100 for individual investors..SOURCE: ONEINDIA 2011-11-22 11:27:00 We are at the moment concentrating on our fourth international airport at Kannur. Once that is done, we will pursue the airline option. We have not given up on the idea of a low-cost carrier..SOURCE: ONEINDIA 2011-11-22 11:27:00 That proposal was there during the previous government. We have not decided on further things. But we have also not given up. Within this short period of our regime, we had not applied our minds. But we will pursue it.SOURCE: ZEE NEWS 2011-11-22 06:02:00

We said Air India Express with just two planes was allowed. Within three months, it got permission to fly to the Gulf. They said it is an Air India subsidiary. We said, okay we accept, but you also have to accept this -- this is a state government airline.SOURCE: ZEE NEWS 2011-11-22 06:02:00

We have also brought down the minimum level of investment in the Kannur airport project to Rs 50,000 from Rs 200,100 for individual investors.SOURCE: ZEE NEWS 2011-11-22 06:02:00

We are at the moment concentrating on our fourth international airport at Kannur. Once that is done, we will pursue the airline option. We have not given up on the idea of a low-cost carrier.SOURCE: ZEE NEWS 2011-11-22 06:02:00

That proposal was there during the previous government. We have not decided on further things. But we have also not given up. Within this short period of our regime, we had not applied our minds. But we will pursue it.SOURCE: WEBINDIA123 2011-11-22 05:44:00

We said Air India Express with just two planes was allowed. Within three months, it got permission to fly to the Gulf. They said it is an Air India subsidiary. We said, okay we accept, but you also have to accept this -- this is a state government airline.SOURCE: WEBINDIA123 2011-11-22 05:44:00

We have also brought down the minimum level of investment in the Kannur airport project to Rs.50,000 from Rs.200,100 for individual investors.SOURCE: WEBINDIA123 2011-11-22 05:44:00

We are at the moment concentrating on our fourth international airport at Kannur. Once that is done, we will pursue the airline option. We have not given up on the idea of a low-cost carrier.SOURCE: WEBINDIA123 2011-11-22 05:44:00

That proposal was there during the previous government. We have not decided on further things. But we have also not given up. Within this short period of our regime, we had not applied our minds. But we will pursue it.SOURCE: HINDUSTAN TIMES 2011-11-22 05:15:00

We said Air India Express with just two planes was allowed. Within three months, it got permission to fly to the Gulf. They said it is an Air India subsidiary. We said, okay we accept, but you also have to accept this -- this is a state government airline.SOURCE: HINDUSTAN TIMES 2011-11-22 05:15:00

We have also brought down the minimum level of investment in the Kannur airport project to Rs 50,000 from Rs 200,100 for individual investors.SOURCE: HINDUSTAN TIMES 2011-11-22 05:15:00

We are at the moment concentrating on our fourth international airport at Kannur. Once that is done, we will pursue the airline option. We have not given up on the idea of a low-cost carrier.SOURCE: HINDUSTAN TIMES 2011-11-22 05:15:00

That proposal was there during the previous government. We have not decided on further things. But we have also not given up. Within this short period of our regime, we had not applied our minds. But we will pursue it.SOURCE: NEW KERALA 2011-11-22 04:42:00

First aircraft will land at the kannur airport in 2014


 It seems that first step towards building a runway at the proposed airport at Kannur will take off in near future. Excise Minister K Babuhas said that the construction of the runway for the proposed airport will begin next year. The plan will be worked out in such a way that the first aircraft can land at the airport in 2014.
The minister said that the Airport Authority of India (AAI) has been asked to prepare a project report for the airport. The Centre for Earth Sciences (CESS) will conduct the environmental studies. Both the reports are expected to ready in four months.
The minister also added that the work on the new international terminal will begin soon at the Cochin international airport and the final clearance will be given at the board meeting of CIAL on September 24.
The plan is to convert the existing international terminal to domestic terminal. Sources say the existing domestic terminal at Cochin airport will be reserved for business jets.The new terminal will be built over 100 acres of land and Rs 250 crore will be spent for that. It is expected to handle about 2000 passengers per hour.
The minister said steps are being initiated start an Air India service between Kochi and Kozhikode, just like the recently introduced Thiruvananthapuram-Kozhikode flight.
First aircraft to be launched in 2014 AAI to prepare report on airport CESS to conduct environmental issues Reports may be ready by four monthsNew international terminal for Kochi.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Airports Authority of India (AAI) comes forward to take equity in Kannur airport

The Airports Authority of India (AAI) has come forward to subscribe to the equity in the Kannur airport project, Minister for Excise and Ports K. Babu said here on Monday.
Talking to the media after conferences on development of the airports in the State, the Minister said that the authority would subscribe to 10 to 11 per cent of the equity subject to clearance of its Director Board.
The consultancy for the project had been awarded to the authority, and it was expected to complete the project report by November.
He said Kinfra would transfer 516 acres acquired for the airport shortly to the government so that it could be transferred to Kannur International Airport Limited.
Its value would be treated as equity of the State government in the project (26 per cent). In addition, Kinfra would give 730 acres on lease to the airport company after getting Cabinet clearance.
New flight
Mr. Babu said Air India had agreed to operate a 40-seater flight connecting Thiruvananthapuram, Kochi, and Kozhikode. The State government would provide tax concession for fuel to be used for this flight. The service would start during Onam.
He said Additional Chief Secretary T. Balakrishnan and Thiruvananthapuram Collector P.M. Francis had been asked to modify the rehabilitation package for the additional area to be acquired for developing the Thiruvananthapuram airport.
About 500 families were to be moved out and they would be resettled in flats on a 15-acre plot at Muttathara. Those not taking the flat would be given the cost of the flat as additional compensation. About 1.5 acres belonging to the district panchayat farm would be taken over and an alternate site would be found for the farm.
The Minister said 157 acres needed for the Karipur (Kozhikode) airport would be handed over to the airport authorities in three months, eliminating delays in land acquisition.
About 20 acres in the area had been earmarked for resettlement of the evictees numbering 276. The Collector would convene a meeting soon to sort out outstanding issues.

Kannur Airport offers several incentives to Non Resident Keralites

On Airports: Chief Minister Oommen Chandy, along with Minister for Airports, holds talks with AAI officials and people's representatives on the Kannur airport, at the Secretariat on Monday.
After the cabinet meeting, Chief Minister Oommen Chandy said that following repeated demands from several quarters, the government has decided to lower the minimum amount for acquiring equity in the proposed Kannur international airport from Rs.200,100 to Rs.50,000. "This was a long standing demand that the minimum amount be reduced so as to help many who want to invest in the Kannur airport. This was first cleared at the board of the airport and today the cabinet accepted the demand," said Chandy.
Kannur International Airport Limited (KIAL) has already been registered and the Rs.1,200 crore airport would be built under a public-private initiative in an area of 2,000 acres near here at Mattanur in Kannur district. It is expected to open in 2013.
There was a huge hue and cry from the diaspora when the previous Left government decided to fix the minimum amount at Rs.200,100 and when the Chandy government took over in May this year, they announced that they would ensure that even the ordinary diaspora can become an investor in Kannur airport.