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Cabinet likely to approve civil aviation policy by March end

The national civil aviation policy, which proposes various tax sops and setting up of no-frills airports, is likely to get Cabinet approval by this month, a top official said today.
Cabinet likely-AV“We are hopeful of getting Cabinet approval to the policy by the end of this month,” Civil Aviation Secretary R N Choubey said here.

The ministry had earlier planned to take the draft policy, which was unveiled on October 30 last year, to the Cabinet for its approval by January.

“We wish it takes less time but it is largely because of the comments received by diverse stakeholders (in response to the draft document),” the secretary said.

Choubey said the Government was “taking time” in finalising the policy and its subsequent implementation.

“The government’s effort is to find the best possible solution to various issues so that the civil aviation sector takes off,” he said.

The draft policy proposes providing viability gap funding for airlines for regional connectivity, various tax sops and setting up of no-frills airports.

Besides, the policy also proposes capping of airfares at Rs 2,500 for one-hour flight under regional connectivity scheme for places that are un-served currently as well as auctioning of bilateral rights, among others.

Pointing out that the country never had an “integrated national civil aviation policy but only sectoral ones”, Choubey said the government is trying to bring an integrated policy which is “bound to take time.”

After taking comments from all stakeholders including airlines, airport operators, general aviation firms, ground-handling agencies, among others, a group of ministers under Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh had discussed the draft policy late last month.

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