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AAI to invest Rs 3,800 cr to upgrade Kolkata, Chennai airports

The AAI will upgrade the Kolkata and Chennai airports at a total cost of Rs 3,800 cr, which is scheduled to be completed by 2010-11

india Updated: Apr 10, 2008 14:41 IST

The Airports Authority of India will upgrade the Kolkata and Chennai airports at a total cost of Rs 3,800 crore, which is scheduled to be completed by 2010-11.

"AAI would spend Rs 2,000 crore to modernise the Kolkata airport and Rs 1,800 crore for the Chennai airport. The modernisation process has to be completed by 2010-11," AAI Chairman K Ramalingam said in New Delhi on Thursday.

At the Kolkata airport, a new runway would be constructed along the existing one. For Chennai airport, the existing cross runway would be operationalised and an additional runway would be built, Ramalingam said.

"The in-principle approval for the modernisation plans of the two airports has been given," he said, adding that the projects would be carried out solely by AAI.

AAI would also commission a new runway at the Delhi airport by September this year.

"A third runway would be commissioned by September along the two existing ones at the Delhi airport," he said.

Speaking at the inauguration of 'Aerodrome India 2008', Ramalingam said there was a need to build aviation infrastructure at faster rate to manage the traffic and build capacity at various airports and the projects are a part of that process.

He also said that efforts are being made to enhance non-traffic revenue to upgrade airport infrastructure.

The aviation sector has witnessed 22-25 per cent annual growth in the last few years and is expected to continue, Ramalingam said.

He also said that the performance based navigational system (PBNS) is in the final stages of its draft and expected to be in place by June this year. AAI is also upgrading the communication navigation system, he said.

PBNS procedures are designed to increase efficiency, capacity and safety of air traffic.

'Aerodrome India 2008' is the third international exhibition and seminar on airport security and infrastructure. The previous two seminars were held in Bangalore in 2005 and Delhi in 2006.