Distinction in travel journalism
Is independent travel journalism important to you?
Click here to keep it independent

9 Jul, 2013

IATA opposes Hyderabad airport’s proposed 100% hike in landing fees


New Delhi, July 8, IRNA — Civil aviation industrys apex body, International Air Transport Association (IATA) has opposed the GMR Hyderabad International Airport (GHAIL) plan for an 100 per cent increase in international aircraft landing fee.

The move will hurt airline operations, IATA has said, requesting the Airports Economic Regulatory Authority of India (AERA) to relook into the proposal.

IATA expressed the views at the recent stakeholder consultation meeting held by the AERA with regard to the determination of aeronautical tariffs at Rajiv Gandhi International Airport, Hyderabad.

IATA Assistant Director Melvyn Tan, while expressing the bodys views on the issue, said airport charges should be in line with International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) principles, pti reported. He said it does not make sense to have different tariff structure for international and domestic airlines as the same aircraft type originating from domestic and international source utilise the same resources.

GMR currently charges Rs 250.50 per ton and Rs 187.90 per ton for international and non-international aircraft respectively, up to 100 tons as landing charges.

It also charges Rs 25,050 plus Rs 336.60 per ton for international flights and Rs 18,790 plus Rs 252.50 per ton for non-international flights in excess of 100 tons.

An aircraft with a maximum certified seat capacity of less than 80, as certified by the DGCA, being operated by domestic scheduled operators, are exempted from payment of landing charges.

It also collects Rs 4.10 per hour per ton as parking charge for aircraft up to 100 tons and Rs 410 plus Rs 5.40 per MT per hour in excess of 100 MT.

Tan said that in view of the margin for all airlines being under pressure, 100 per cent increase in international landing fee will have impact on their operations and it should have been kept unchanged, especially since any increase in landing fee will not result in reduction of UDF.

He has requested AERA for 2-weeks time for submitting IATA’s details on the issue.

An Emirates representative said the airline will support single till as per authority for tariff determination. However, the official said that it is not the time for 100 per cent increase in cost for landing charges as the industry is facing volatile times.

Singapore Airlines representative, while endorsing the views of IATA, said that any increase in tariff will have a negative impact on airline operations.

Air India stated that detailed comments will be furnished shortly. It however, opined that steep hike will impact the cost of airline operations and the issue needs to be reviewed to work out optimised solution.

AERA chairperson Yashwant Bhave, in response to the opinions expressed by the airlines and IATA, said the landing charges have not increased since 2001 – except only by 10 per cent in 2009 – thus the proposed increase appears to be high.

He said the aeronautical tariff and revenue basket have different components like landing, parking and housing charges as well as the UDF. The authority has attempted to keep a balance amongst these different components of the basket.

AERA will accept comments and suggestion on the consultation paper up to July 22, 2013.