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In another two decades, India will have at least 31 cities with two airports while Delhi and Mumbai will have a third airport by then, according to Vision 2040 document of the Ministry of Civil Aviation released on Tuesday.

Overall, said the report, released at Global Aviation Summit in Mumbai, India will need 200 airports and an investment of $40-50 billion to handle at least 1.1 billion passengers flying to, from and within the country.

The document says most of the large Indian airports are expected to be saturated over the next 10-15 years.

“The projected passenger traffic (to, from and within India) for FY 2040 is 1.1 billion. This comprises around 821 million domestic passengers and around 303 million international passengers (to and from India). This is over six times the 187 million traffic recorded in FY 2018,” the vision document said.

It was noticed earlier in 2018 that there is need of a second airport in at least 20 cities due to the increasing air passenger traffic.

According to the document released by the government during Global Aviation Summit 2019, while most of the airports’ passenger capacity will saturate in the next 15 years, India will have to nearly double the count from 99 to 200.

In growing areas like Delhi and Mumbai even the second airport is expected to be saturated by 2040 and these cities will require a third one.

It is reported that Mumbai, Delhi, Goa, Vishakapatnam, Jaipur, Pune, Ahmedamad, Rajkot, Patna, Kolkata and Bengaluru are among the cities that require a new airport by 2030. Many more cities will join the list with passage of time. The ministry will now let the respective state government know and ask them to identify and acquire land at least five years before the airport reaches its maximum capacity of passengers.

“India’s commercial airline fleet is likely to grow from 622 in March 2018 to around 2,359 in March 2040,” said the “Vision 2040” document released by the ministry.

“India may have around 190-200 operational airports in 2040. The incremental land requirement is expected to be around 150,000 acres and the capital investment (not including cost of acquiring land) is expected to be $40-50 billion,” according to an official quoted by The Hindustan Times (HT).

The Vision 2040 report was set up in discussion with the legislature however it was not commissioned by it, said aviation secretary RN Choubey. “We didn’t commission the report as we wanted suggestions from the industry,” he said. The legislature will ponder on the recommendations and accept an approach which ones to actualize, Choubey said.

Delhi Airport is reportedly expected to cross its maximum capacity by end of this year and is considered as one of the busiest airports in the world according to Airports Council International (ACI) .

India is all set to have a powerful commercial aircraft manufacturing ecosystem with global joint effort. It aims to meet 70% of the country’s commercial demand and also have export business with other countries.

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