Bill to amend Airports Economic Regulatory Authority Act gets Parliament nod amid protest | Daily Current Affairs 2021

Bill to amend Airports Economic Regulatory Authority Act gets Parliament nod amid protest

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Airports Economic Regulatory Authority of India Bill 2021

Airports Economic Regulatory Authority of India Bill, 2021: With the passage in Rajya Sabha, Airports Economic Regulatory Authority of India (Amendment) Bill, 2021 got approval from both houses of Parliament on 4th August 2021.

Lok Sabha has already passed the bill on July 29.

Key Points about the Bill:

  • The Bill was moved on the floor of the house for passage and consideration by Civil Aviation Minister Jyotiraditya Scindia.
  • It seeks to amend the Airports Economic Regulatory Authority of India Act, 2008.
    • The 2008 Act established the Airport Economic Regulatory Authority (AERA).
    • AERA regulates tariffs and other charges (such as airport development fees) for aeronautical services rendered at major airports in India and monitors performance standards of airports.
  • The bill allows tariff determination of a ‘group of airports’ by way of amending the definition of ‘major airport.’
  • The bill amends the provisions of the law in relation to tariffs for single airports.

Objective:

  • The main objective of the government is to develop not only the high traffic volume & profitable airports but also the low traffic volume of non-profitable airports.
  • The revenue earned by AAI from these airports will be utilized for the development of airports in Tier-II and Tier-III cities.
  • It would help encourage the development of smaller airports.
  • This approach would help in the development of more airports through the PPP route thus, expanding the air connectivity to relatively remote and far-flung areas.

How is an airport designated as a major airport?

  • The 2008 Act designates an airport as a major airport if it has annual passenger traffic of at least 35 lakh.
  • The central government may also designate any airport as a major airport by a notification. 
  • The Bill adds that the central government may group airports and notify the group as a major airport.

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