Rolls Royce and HAL to set up aero engines production facility
HAL and British aero engines manufacturer Rolls Royce have commenced construction of a new joint venture manufacturing facility in Bangalore, where components of civil aero engines, marine and energy gas turbine will be produced. The proposed production facility which will be about 7,200 square meters in size is owned by International Aerospace Manufacturing Private Limited, a joint venture company formed in the year 2010 by HAL and Rolls Royce. The facility will start production of aero engines and marine gas turbines by 2012.
PSA’s view: Rolls Royce and HAL have been strategic partners since 1956 when HAL started producing the Orpheus engines under license. Due to their strong collaboration, both HAL and Rolls Royce have progressively contributed to the development of Indian aerospace industry. This latest collaboration between HAL and Rolls Royce marks a long standing relationship between both the companies.
Ajit Singh sworn in as new Aviation Minister
After strucking an electoral deal with the ruling United Progressive Alliance, Mr. Ajit Singh, Rashtriya Lok Dal party leader was sworn in as the new Civil Aviation Minister at a brief ceremony at Rashtrapati Bhavan. Mr. Singh was the only minister to take the oath at a 50 minute ceremony which was administered by the President Pratibha Patil.
PSA’s view: This is a political move initiated by the United Progressive Alliance. The new civil aviation minister Mr. Ajit Singh will have his task cut out for reviving a beleaguered aviation sector, burdened by high costs and huge financial losses. Some of the important issues that Mr. Singh needs to address are: (a) revival of cash strapped Air India; (b) bail out private carrier Kingfisher Airlines; and (c) allowing foreign airlines to pick up equity in Indian carrier.
15 green field airports get ‘in principle’ approval
Government of India has granted ‘in principle’ approval for setting up of 15 green field airports namely at: (a) Mopa in Goa; (b) Navi Mumbai, Shirdi and Sindhudurg in Maharashtra; (c) Shimoga, Gulbarga, Hasan and Bijapur in Karnataka; (d) Kannur in Kerala; (e) Durgapur in West Bengal; (f) Pakyong in Sikkim; (g) Datia in Gwalior; (h) Kushnagar in Uttar Pradesh; (i) Karaikal in Puducheery; and (j) Paladi in Jaipur. The necessary action for project development including acquisition of land, financing of airport projects will be taken care of by respective airport promoters.
PSA’s view: It is a positive step initiated by the Government of India. The ‘in principle’ approval given by the Government of India would help in promoting tourism and trade in such states.
Civil Aviation Policy
The Government of India is all set to finalize the Civil Aviation policy which will be finalized in the next 5 months. The Directorate General of Civil Aviation, nodal agency formulated by the Government of India which regulates the aviation industry is of the opinion that the proposed aviation policy would be applicable for the next 10 years. The new Civil Aviation policy will focus on attracting higher private sector investment into the ailing aviation sector. In addition, the new Civil Aviation policy will also formulate an ‘economic regulatory framework’ to monitor the air fares which will look at the legality of changes in the air fares by the airlines. The new Civil Aviation policy will also prose to set up promotion board for air cargo.
PSA’s view: Government’s decision to formulate a new Civil Aviation policy is a prudent step initiated by them considering the status of our aviation sector. It is imperative that the new Civil Aviation policy is able to meet the challenges and is such that can be sustainable and viable.