India is the world’s third largest domestic aviation market and third largest aviation market. By 2024, India’s overall aviation market is expected to become the third largest globally.
To cater to the rapidly growing demand, airline operators have been expanding their capacity. Capacity available in India’s domestic flights, as measured by Available Seat Kilometres, stood at 155,033.4 million kms while demand, as measured by Revenue Passenger Kilometres, stood at 136,631.4 million kms in FY19 (up to Feb 2019).
Capacity available in India’s international flights, as measured by Available Seat Kilometres, stood at 126,054.2 million kms while demand, as measured by Revenue Passenger Kilometres, stood at 111,620.4 million kms in FY19 (up to Feb 2019).
Domestic passenger traffic stood at 275.22 million and expanded at a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 13.65 per cent over FY06–19. International passenger traffic posted a CAGR of 9.11 per cent over FY06-19. Freight Traffic grew at a CAGR of 7.44 per cent over FY06-19. Freight Traffic is expected to grow at a CAGR of 7.27 per cent to reach 4.14 million tonnes in FY23.
During FY20 (April-December 2019), air passenger traffic stood at 262.67 million. Out of which domestic passenger traffic stood at 210.61 million while international traffic stood at 52.06 million. Total freight traffic handled in India stood at 2.57 million tonnes during the same time period. During April-December 2019, domestic freight traffic stood at 1.02 million tonnes while international freight stood at 1.54 million tonnes. The expenditure of Indian travellers is expected to grow up to Rs 9.5 lakh crore (US$ 136 billion) by 2021.
As of March 2019, there are 103 operational airports in India. As of July 2019, 643 airplanes were in-service in the fleet of scheduled Indian operators. Due to rise in demand in air travel, India will need 2,380 new commercial airplanes by 2038. India is expected to have the largest number of aircraft flying by its scheduled airlines latest by December 2019. India plans to open 100 additional airports by 2024. As on October 2019, 55 AAI airports were declared as Single-Use Plastic Free Airport Terminals.
The Government of India has launched regional connectivity scheme named UDAN (Ude Desh ka Aam Nagrik) to make flying affordable for common man.
AAI is going to invest Rs 15,000 crore (US$ 2.32 billion) in 2018-19 for expanding existing terminals and constructing 15 new ones. It has opened airport sector to private participation, six airports across major cities are being developed under the PPP model. The Airports Authority of India (AAI) aims to bring around 250 airports under operation across the country by 2020. Investments to the tune of Rs 42000-45000 crores (US$ 5.99-6.41 billion) are expected in India’s airport infrastructure between FY18-23. Under the budget 2019-20, for scheme UDAAN Rs 450 crore (US$ 64.39 million) has allocated by for the revival of 50 airports and viability gap funding for north east connectivity.
FDI inflows in India’s air transport sector (including air freight) reached US$ 1,948.06 million between April 2000-September 2019.