Millennium Post

Civil aviation's budgetary allocation increased to over Rs 5,000 crore

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Wednesday proposed to allocate Rs 5,167.60 crore to the Ministry of Civil Aviation for the 2017-18 fiscal.

The government had allocated Rs 4,230.40 crore to the ministry for the financial year 2016-17.

However, the revised estimates for 2016-17, showed that the Civil Aviation Ministry received a total allocation of Rs 5,216.64 crore.

Out of the total outlay earmarked for the ministry during 2017-18, Rs 1,800 crore worth of additional equity has been proposed to be infused in the cash-strapped national passenger carrier Air India.

The budgetary support has been provided to the airline on account of a turnaround and financial restructuring plan worth more than Rs 30,000 crore which was passed in April, 2012.

"The provision (turnaround plan of Air India) is made for government investment in Air India to meet the equity shortfall to discharge its liabilities related to loans, NCD (non-convertible debentures) etc. which are government guaranteed," the document on 'Notes on Demands for Grants' for the Ministry of Civil Aviation read.

According to the expenditure budget document 2017-18, a total outlay of Rs 2,308 crore has been proposed to be provided to the state-run airline.

Another budgetary support of Rs 100 crore is to be provided to Airports Authority of India (AAI) with a total allocation of Rs 2,543 crore.

The grants-in-aid to AAI is given by the central government as reimbursement for expenditure that has already been made on existing projects.

"The funds are provided for GAGAN Project, Tirupati Airport, Pakyong Greenfield Airport and Jammu Airport. This also includes the provision for North Eastern Region," the document pointed out.
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