India aiming to top five aviation markets:Ajit Singh

Hyderabad: India is likely to be among the top five aviation markets in the world by the end of the 12th five-year plan, Civil Aviation Minister Ajit Singh said here on Tuesday.

"Today, India is the world`s 9th largest aviation market. The number of passengers in India is set to cross 300 million mark by 2020. Not only are our airports, both in the PPP mode as well as those run by AAI, now world class; but an MRO facility here is in line with the vision for the Indian civil aviation industry for the 12th plan (2012 – 2017) to propel India among the top 5 civil aviation markets in the world," Ajit Singh said while inaugurating an aircraft maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) complex of MAS GMR Aero Technic(MGAT)at the Rajiv Gandhi International Airport here.

The MRo complex can perform base maintenance and `G` and `D` checks for A320s, ATR 42s, ATR 72s and the new generation Boeing 737s to begin with. It will build its capability gradually to provide maintenance services for Airbus 330s and Boeing 777s.

Currently, the facility has the capacity to do an estimated 200 aircraft checks annually, according to GMR. The MGAT has already obtained regulatory certifications from the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA), as well as the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) and is ready for operations, GM Rao Chairman GMR Group said.

Petroleum Minister S Jaipal Reddy who attended the function, said GMR group should provide employment to local youth as there are many engineering colleges located in Hyderabad.