INDIA mega conglomerate, Adani Group, with a 74 per cent stake, has taken over management of Mumbai airport, which controls 33 per cent of India’s air cargo and 25 per cent of its passenger trade, reports, of the Omidyar Network of New York.
Adani Airport Holdings Limited, a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Adani Group, on Tuesday took over the management from GVK, the company said.
The group has now become the country’s largest airport infrastructure company that is in charge of developing or managing eight airports in total.
Adani also announced that it will start the construction of the Navi Mumbai International Airport in August. “Financial closure to be completed in the next 90 days and the New International Airport will be commissioned in 2024,” the company statement said.
Adani Group chairman Gautam Adani said that the company’s objective was to “reinvent airports as ecosystems that drive local economic development and act as the nuclei around which we can catalyse aviation-linked businesses”.
In 2019, the Adani Group had won competitive bids for control on the operations of the airports in Jaipur, Ahmedabad, Guwahati, Lucknow, Mangalore and Thiruvananthapuram. The group won the right to operate them for 50 years, surpassing established players like GMR Airports Limited.
The Adani Group, however, plans to defer the takeover of the airports in Jaipur, Guwahati and Thiruvananthapuram till December, as these assets have currently turned financially unviable due to the Covid scare, Mint reported.
New Delhi’s Indian Express said Adani had won the bids for the six airports despite the Ministry of Finance and NITI Aayog’s objections. The Department of Economic Affairs had suggested in a note that not more than two airports should be given to the same bidder because of the huge financial risk involved in the project, the report said.
In August 2020, Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan had written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi against the Centre’s decision to hand over Thiruvananthapuram airport to the Adani Group. Mr Vijayan had said that the move was against “the assurance given during a personal meeting with prime minister in New Delhi”.

Source : Shippingazette