AAI received 45 proposals under Regional Connectivity Scheme
The Regional Connectivity Scheme was launched by Union Civil Aviation Minister Ashok Gajapathi Raju on 21 October 2016.
The Union Ministry of Civil Aviation on 18 January 2017 announced that the AAI received 45 proposals under the Regional Connectivity Scheme (RCS) till 16 January 2017, the deadline for submitting proposals.
The Airports Authority of India (AAI), which is implementing the RCS, received these 45 proposals from 11 bidders covering 65 airports and more than 200 routes.
Out of the 65 airports, 52 airports are un-served and 13 are under-served airports as per the provisions of the scheme.
After scrutinising the proposals, the routes and networks will be awarded to the bidders who quoted the lowest requirement of Viability Gap Funding (VGF).
Key features of Regional Connectivity Scheme
• The Regional Connectivity Scheme (RCS) is also called as Ude Desh ka Aam Naagrik (UDAN).
• It seeks to achieve twin objectives of promoting balanced regional growth and making flying affordable for masses.
• RCS is a key component of the National Civil Aviation Policy 2016. It was unveiled by the government on 15 June 2016. The UDAN will be in operation for a period of 10 years.
• It envisages connectivity to un-served and under-served regions of the country through revival of existing airstrips and airports.
• This would be achieved through a financial stimulus in the form of Central and State government concessions as well as Viability Gap Funding (VGF) to the interested airlines to kick-off operations from such airports.
• The fare for a one hour journey of approximately 500 km on a fixed wing aircraft or for a 30 minute journey on a helicopter would be capped at Rs 2500 under the scheme.
• The State Governments are also partners in the scheme.
• About 80 per cent of the subsidy will be collected by charging a levy of up to Rs 8500 on each departing flight of domestic airlines. The rest 20 per cent will come from the respective State governments.