aviation | IST

India on its way to become an international aviation hub, says Jayant Sinha

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The first ever Global Aviation Summit is taking place in Mumbai over the next two days. This will be the first-of-its-kind event in the world with participation from more than 86 countries. CNBC-TV18's Utkarsh Chaturvedi caught up with Jayant Sinha on the side-lines of that conference and asked him when will India become an international aviation hub.

Jayant Sinha, the Minister of State for Civil Aviation, spoke to CNBC-TV18 about India's plan to grow its aviation base and become an international aviation hub.
“We are already progressing very well towards making some of our major airports as hubs. So Delhi has added many international destinations, Mumbai has had many destinations but has not been able to add too many because of capacity constraints but it is Bangalore that is coming up very quickly – that, I think, is going to become another major global hub for India. Bangalore is adding a second run-way and a second terminal,” Sinha said on the sidelines of the Global Aviation Summit in Mumbai.
“What is very important is that we have to design our terminals to enable transfers. So whether it is a domestic to domestic transfer, domestic to international, international to international, all of these transfers have to be facilitated in our terminals and that is what enables a global hub to be established,” he added.
Talking about the upcoming new terminals in Bangalore and Delhi, Sinha said, “Our airlines also have to be able to put a number of flights to many of these destinations and increasingly as our Indian carriers add international destinations, they will also be able to enable a global hub to happen. All of these have been underway over the last few years but particularly with the design of the new terminals in Bangalore and Delhi and then the growth of Navi Mumbai, we will certainly be able to establish some of our airports as major global hubs".
With regards to the volatility in fuel prices, he said, “Fuel prices have been volatile for decades now and everybody that operates in the airline industry understands that they have to take appropriate hedging and risk-mitigation measures when it comes to fuel prices. So the best airlines, the best carriers are appropriately hedged, they know exactly how to manage that volatility. We would like oil prices to be as low and as stable but these prices are set through global markets so we have to be able to handle any ups and downs.”
 
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