EU-India Aviation Summit begins in New Delhi

Shri Jyotiraditya M. Scindia invites industry players from EU to join the fastest growing aviation market.

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Today marked the start of the two-day EU-India Aviation Summit in New Delhi. During the summit, the Airport Authority of India and Eurocontrol signed a declaration of intent. The DGCA and the European Union Aviation Safety signed a letter of intent/memorandum of understanding for increased cooperation.

The summit is focused on the relationship between the EU and India in the area of air transport as well as the potential and problems that the two countries share, such as the recovery of aviation traffic following the Covid outbreak, increased sustainability, continued safety, and the advancement of unmanned aircraft systems.

Shri Jyotiraditya M. Scindia, Union Minister of Civil Aviation, gave a virtual speech at the summit. He said, “India and the European Union (EU) have historically had close ties that continue to flourish today due to strong human-to-human, digital, and physical connectivity, supported by the aviation sector.”

Shri Scindia said, “The Government has taken many initiatives to boost aircraft manufacture in the nation under the visionary leadership of Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi. To make the regulatory climate as favourable as possible for MROs, we have changed it. We have lowered the GST rate on MRO services from 18% to 5% and authorised 100% Foreign Direct Investment into the industry. For the convenience of doing business, new MRO rules have also been implemented to rationalise the fees assessed to MRO Service Providers. I would encourage EU businesspeople to take advantage of these possibilities and join the world’s aviation sector, which is expanding quickly.

The minister called on EU participants to collaborate with India to create adaptable technology and to support efforts to reduce emissions from the aviation sector. “By 2024, we want airports to use only green energy, and by 2030, we want them to be net zero. Already, 25 AAI airports are powered entirely by green energy. By 2025, we hope to have another 121 airports achieve carbon neutrality. We aim to promote the use of Sustainable Aviation Fuel, and we have enforced the use of renewable energy as part of the bid documents for future airports. Indian airline operators have already used biofuel that has been blended with ATF in demonstration flights, he said.

The summit also heard from Ms Adina Vălean, the transport commissioner for the European Union. She stated, “Our shared experiences and objectives make us natural partners in everything from commercial opportunities to aviation safety and security, sustainability, air traffic management, or consumer protection.”

The speaker continued that we already have a good history of partnership and cooperation in many sectors. I sincerely hope that our cooperation with aviation will be one of our most fruitful ones.

The meeting was heard by Sweden’s Minister of Housing and Infrastructure, Mr. Andreas Carlson. “India and the EU have had bilateral relations for a very long time,” he remarked. I am confident that we have a bright future together with even closer EU-India collaboration.

Speaking during the conference, Shri Rajiv Bansal, Secretary of the Ministry of Civil Aviation, said, “There are many fronts on which India and the EU cooperate, and this summit marks the beginning of that journey.” He claimed that the aviation industry in India is expanding quickly and that we are getting ready for more outstanding infrastructure, better connectivity, and a renewed emphasis on innovation.