A study by RoutesOnline has found that the Kempegowda International Airport (KIA) is the second fastest growing airport in the world. BIAL said that the study by RoutesOnline is in sync with the data that points to India is among the fastest-growing aviation markets. To keep pace with this growth, the Airport is on the cusp of tremendous infrastructure development that will include a new terminal and a second runway.
“The Kempegowda International Airport, Bengaluru (BLR Airport), is proud to be in second place among the top 20 fastest-growing major airports in the world. Having added 4.18 million passengers during the first six months of 2018, the BLR Airport is now the second fastest-growing airport in the world by actual passenger numbers,” said Hari Marar, MD & CEO, BIAL.
What drives the growth?
According to aviation expert Devesh Agarwal, a multitude of reasons have contributed to the growth of passenger traffic at KIA.
“There are many factors; Bengaluru has been historically not very well connected via rail or roads. The regional headquarters of the Railways has never been in Bengaluru. The headquarters of the Southern Railway is located in Chennai. Likewise, the headquarters of the South Central and South Western railway is in Vijayawada and Hubballi, respectively. The city does not have a seaport, and that also contributes to air traffic. Bengaluru is a leading city in India in terms of percentage value of GDP sent by air. It is almost 40 to 50% as against other cities which report below 30%,” he said.
He added that the IT sector, the physical brick and mortar industry, electronics, precision engineering, food and drugs, floriculture have a huge presence in Bengaluru and spur this growth.
“People from the tech industry, knowledge industry travel by air by. People from these sectors and traditionally Bengalureans travel in Business Class. They look at value for money and are money conscious. So, it is hardly a surprise that we are one of the fastest growing airports. Bengaluru’s air traffic has been witnessing the fastest growth in the last 15 years,” he added.