Uttar Pradesh government’s joint venture company Noida International Airport (NIAL) and Yamuna International Airport (YIAPL), signed a licence memorandum here on Saturday, signalling the formal handover of land for Jewar airport from NIAL to the concessionaire, YIAPL. With this, decks have now been cleared for the financial closure, followed by a ground-breaking ceremony that is likely to be held in the third week of August. Prime Minister Narendra Modi is expected to inaugurate the construction work and lay the foundation stone.
YIAPL — a 100% subsidiary of Zurich Airport International AG, that had been incorporated as a special purpose vehicle (SPV) to develop the Rs 30,000 crore greenfield Noida International Airport, on the outskirts of Delhi, is in the final stages of achieving financial closure of Rs 3,725 crore loan for the first phase of the project from the State Bank of India (SBI).
Speaking to FE, Christoph Schnellmann, Chief Executive Officer, YIAPL said that the financial closure of the project is round the corner and he expects it to be completed within the next two weeks.
“We are pleased to confirm that over 1,300 hectares of land of the total 1,334 hectares have been handed over to us today for the development of Noida International Airport. So, we have received right of way for about 90% today and have signed a site inventory memorandum, which gives us the right of way to the available part of the site to commence construction activities. Our timeline to deliver the airport is three years after the complete land is made available. So, we are planning to complete work on phase-I of the airport development by end of 2024 with an investment of Rs 5,700 crore.”
“While 65% of the investment, which works out to be Rs 372 crore would be funded through debt, 35%, that is Rs 2,000 crore would be through equity. For the debt part, we are in the final stages of securing the loan through SBI, while the rest would be provided by Zurich Airport, the parent company,” Schnellmann said.
Stating that the state government is working meticulously to complete preparation of the remainder of the 1,334 hectares site, he said the company’s endeavour is to start the construction work at the earliest and deliver the first phase NIA within three years. “The Noida International Airport will hold strategic importance and will be an economic engine for growth for Uttar Pradesh and India and we are committed to developing the aviation ecosystem in India,” he stated.
“We have almost completed all the formalities for the start of construction. The share holder agreement between Zurich Airport International (AG), which had emerged as the highest bidder for the proposed airport at Jewar in November last year, and Noida International Airport (NIAL) has also been completed. Apart from this, 100% of the project affected families have been shifted out. So all hurdles in the initiation of the project are now complete. With the licence memorandum also done, we can expect the ground breaking anytime,” an official of the civil aviation department said. “Though the date for the foundation stone laying ceremony has still not been finalised yet, we are working towards a ceremony in the second fortnight of August.”