The Governor of Maharashtra CH. Vidyasagar Rao has said that the aviation sector is going to be the growth engine for future progress and development. He was speaking at the valedictory session of the first Global Aviation Summit 2019 in Mumbai today.
The global aviation industry is ushering in an era of rapid expansion. The International Civil Aviation Organization has predicted a 100 per cent increase in global air travel by the year 2030, he added.
"The Ministry of Civil Aviation anticipates that in the next two decades, air passenger traffic in India will grow to 1.12 billion passengers per year from the current 187 million passengers. Needless to say, this will open up tremendous opportunities for investment in infrastructure development and upgradation in the years to come. The industry will also require a large pool of skilled manpower", the Governor said.
He also said that the Civil Aviation Sector as an important catalyst in achieving the Prime Minister's vision of doubling the income of farmers. He cited the example of a single cargo flight which was started between Kabul and Mumbai; the flight, which carried apples from Kabul to Mumbai and transported back tomatoes, helped farmers and retailers belonging to both countries. He suggested that there are many such routes which need to be explored.
"Tourism and aviation industries can complement each other and create numerous opportunities for employment and income generation for our people," he said.
The Governor also emphasised the need to intensify the search for alternative fuels and shift from jet fuel to biofuels in the coming years, as this will help reduce aviation emissions.
He suggested that the Global Aviation Summit can be held annually and that Maharashtra could be the permanent venue for the same.
Addressing the session, Civil Aviation Minister Shri Suresh Prabhu appealed to the stakeholders to take it as a collective responsibility to fulfil the ambition of everybody to fly. He said that the "Vision 2040" document articulates a vision for India, but taking into account the global and integrated nature of the aviation sector, it could also be a vision for all. He further said that given the rising trend in global trade, Air Cargo Policy is going to be an important driver of future growth. Referring to drone policy, the Minister said that policymaking all issues can be sorted out and that the absence of policy is a greater evil.
Speaking on the occasion, Minister of State for Civil Aviation Shri Jayant Sinha said that the Global Aviation Summit sought to set a roadmap for the continuation of the growth the aviation sector achieved during the last four years. He stated that India will very shortly be among the top three aviation markets in the world. He expressed the need to transform the aviation sector by manufacturing aircraft, drones and other technologies in the country.
Civil Aviation Ministers from various countries; Secretary, Ministry of Civil Aviation, Shri R N Choubey; President, FICCI, Shri Sandip Somany; Principal Secretary, Government of Maharashtra, Ms Valsa Nair Singh; foreign delegates, captains of industry and other dignitaries were present on the occasion.
(With Inputs from PIB)