The frontrunner of Adani Group, Adani Enterprises (AEL), has committed a hefty investment of Rs 100 billion in the airport business through its subsidiary Adani Airports by 2026.
Recently, Adani Airports won a bid for six airports as a part of the government’s privatisation initiative, where bidders were invited to handle the operations and maintenance of the following airports – Ahmedabad, Jaipur, Lucknow, Thiruvananthapuram, Mangaluru and Guwahati.
Reportedly, the company will make an upfront payment of Rs 36 billion and about Rs 60 billion as capital expenditure over a period of seven years. It is estimated that three airports will start generating profits from April 2020.
After the Cabinet approval, the Airports Authority of India (AAI) issued letters of award to the conglomerate for the Ahmedabad, Lucknow and Mangaluru airports.
However, the government has yet to take a call about Thiruvananthapuram airport. The Chief Minister of Kerala has requested that the airport not be privatised and be handed over to the state government for its operation, instead.
As far as the Jaipur and Guwahati airports are concerned, the government sited legal issues as reasons for the delay and reaffirmed that they were almost resolved and a decision would be taken soon.
The AAI will nonetheless, still be in charge of the statutory functions of providing communication navigation surveillance and air traffic management services among other things.