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Fliers from airport may shell out more for a Metro Link

AirFlying from the Mumbai Airport might become costlier from next year if a proposal floated by regulator AERA to levy an additional fee from passengers to fund a metro rail project there, is accepted.

The Airports Economic Regulatory Authority (AERA) would take a final decision after receiving suggestions from the stakeholders.

The tariff regulator has made the proposal following a submission by airport operator Mumbai International Airport Limited (MIAL) seeking permission to charge additional development fee that would be used towards putting in place metro rail connectivity.

AERA has suggested levying “an additional Development Fee (DF) of Rs. 15 for each embarking domestic passenger and Rs. 75 for each embarking international passenger towards metro connectivity project.”
The DF levy would be exclusive of any other applicable service taxes. MIAL currently levies a DF of Rs. 600 from an international passenger and Rs. 100 from a domestic passenger flying out of Mumbai airport.

The fresh proposal is part of a consultation paper titled ‘Determination of Development Fee in respect of the Metro Connectivity Project for Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport, Mumbai’, on which all stakeholders’ comments have been sought till November 26.

According to the consultation paper, the additional DF is proposed to be levied from as early as January 1, 2016.

Though MIAL had proposed to levy the additional DF from November 1, 2015 till March 31, 2020, “in view of the practicality of time schedule with respect to the consultation process and the requirement to reassess various issues based on stakeholder comments, the Authority proposes to consider January 1, 2016 as the start date of levy,” the paper said.

Mumbai Metro Rail Corporation (MMRC), the project implementation company for all the metro rail corridors across the western metropolis, is to construct a 32.5 kilometre long underground metro rail line, connecting Colaba in South Mumbai to SEEPZ in western Andheri suburb.

The Colaba-SEEPZ line, to be built at a projected cost of Rs. 23,136 crore, will have 27 stations, of which three stations fall under the Chhatrapati Shivaji airport area.

MMRC, on its part, has sought contribution from MIAL towards funding of these three metro stations.

In the September quarter, MIAL saw its net loss narrow to Rs. 11.53 crore from Rs. 68.87 crore recorded in the year-ago period. Its revenues in the three months ending September rose to Rs. 636.17 crore from Rs. 580.67 crore in the same period a year ago.

MIAL is majority owned by GVK Power & Infrastructure.

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