Adanis to run more airports
The Adanis have won a 50-year lease on three more airports after the Union cabinet on Wednesday approved the proposal to farm out the airports at Jaipur, Guwahati and Thiruvananthapuram through the public-private partnership (PPP).
Adani Enterprises had won the rights to six airports, including the three — the others are Lucknow, Ahmedabad and Mangalore — through the PPP model after competitive bidding in February 2019.
In July 2019, the Union cabinet had approved the proposal to lease out the Ahmedabad, Mangalore and Lucknow airports to the Adanis.
“The Airports Authority of India (AAI) is not giving these airports permanently to the private operator. After running them for 50 years, the private operator would be handing over the airports back to the AAI,” information and broadcasting minister Prakash Javadekar said at a press conference after a cabinet meeting on Wednesday.
At present, all the six airports are owned and managed by the government-run AAI.
The minister said the AAI will receive Rs 1,070 crore as an upfront amount from the private operator for leasing the airports at Jaipur, Guwahati, Thiruvananthapuram and this fund will be used to develop airports in smaller cities.
Seven months after the Cabinet approval, Adani Enterprises on February 14 this year signed the concessionaire agreement with the AAI for the operation, management and development of airports at Ahmedabad, Mangalore and Lucknow.
In June, the AAI gave three more months to the Ahmedabad-based company to take over the management of these three airports because of the Covid-19 situation. This means the deadline for the takeover has been pushed to November 12 from August 12.
The cabinet has also decided to increase the minimum price sugar mills pay to sugarcane growers by Rs 10 to Rs 285 per quintal for the next marketing year starting October 2020.
In a statement, the government said FRP (fair and remunerative price) of Rs 285 per quintal has been fixed for a basic recovery rate of 10 per cent.
However, a premium of Rs 2.85 per quintal will be paid by mills for every 0.1 per cent increase above 10 per cent in the recovery, it said.
Also, the government has made a provision for reduction in FRP by Rs 2.85 per quintal for every 0.1 percentage point decrease in recovery, in respect of those mills whose recovery is below 10 per cent but above 9.5 per cent.
However, for mills having recovery of 9.5 per cent or below, FRP is fixed at Rs 270.75 per quintal.
“The determination of FRP will be in the interest of sugarcane growers keeping in view their entitlement to a fair and remunerative price for their produce,” the statement said.
The government estimates the country’s total sugar production to be at 28-29 million tonne in the current year ending next month compared with 33.1 million tonnes during 2018-19 due to a sharp fall in cane acreage in Maharashtra and Karnataka.
The Centre also approved a proposal to give a one-time relaxation in the working capital limit for discoms as part of the Rs 90,000cr liquidity infusion scheme.
At the press meet, Javadekar said, “There is a slump in power consumption. PFC and REC have been allowed to give loans above the limit...(of) more than 25 per cent working capital limit. This will increase the liquidity of the state discoms.”