GMR wins bid to build Goa's second airport, at Mopa

GMR Airport Limited has won the bid to build a greenfield airport in Mopa, in Goa, the second international airport in the state, by offering the highest revenue share to the Goa government, beating Essel Infra Projects Ltd and state-run Airports Authority of India.

The airport, which will cover a total area of 81,29,455 sq m, will be constructed on design, build, finance, operate and transfer (DBFOT) basis and is estimated to cost over Rs4,500 crore.

GMR, which is already operating airports at Delhi, Hyderabad and an in the Philippines, offered the highest revenue share of 36.99 per cent to the state government. AAI offered 32.31 per cent and Essel Infra Project Limited offered 27 per cent.

In comparison, operators of two of India's biggest airports - in Mumbai and in Delhi - share 37 per cent and 46 per cent, respectively.

While existing airports farmed out to private operators offer more revenue share, airports that have to be built from scratch, like the one in Bengaluru, offer a revenue share as low as 4 per cent to the state government.

Out of the five interested parties, only three bidders, including GMR Airport Limited, Essel Infra Project Limited and Airports Authority of India, had participated in the request for proposal (RFP). The other two, Voluptas Developers – a Hiranandani Group firm- and GVK did not participated in the RFP.

The airport will be constructed on design, build, finance, operate and transfer (DBFOT) basis.

Initially, the state government will issue a letter of award, following the signing of concession agreement. The concession will be for 40 years, which may be extended for another 20 years.

Fresh bids will be called to operate the airport after 40 years with existing bidder being given priority.

The airport will be completed in four phases, with the work on the first phase likely to commence in January 2017 and expected to be completed by 2020. The company has to complete the first phase within three years from the commencement of the work.

During the first phase, the airport will handle 4.4 million passengers per annum. At present the Goa international airport at Dabolim handles 5.5 million passengers per annum.

Work on the second phase will commence once 80 per cent of passenger traffic is handled by the airport. Similarly, work on the third and fourth phase will commence after the second terminal nears full capacity.