Chief Minister Pramod Sawant assures that Dabolim International Airport will not be shut down, stating that the Airport Authority of India has invested over Rs 500 crore in its infrastructure.
The Goa Assembly witnessed a heated debate over the airport’s future due to declining passenger traffic. Sawant reiterated that Dabolim will coexist with the new Mopa airport. In response to concerns raised by Curtorim MLA Aleixo Reginaldo Lourenco about the decline in flight movements and passenger traffic, Sawant highlighted AAI’s investment and dismissed fears of closure.
He also addressed worries about the Indian Navy taking over, stating it’s impossible for private companies to pressure them. Sawant mentioned the Union Cabinet’s decision to continue commercial operations at Dabolim.
He assured that revenue from Mopa airport operations would benefit the state starting May 2024, as per the agreement with GMR Goa International Airport. Since Dabolim is managed by AAI, the state does not receive revenue from it. Members urged the government to address the decline in passengers since Mopa’s opening, which Sawant confirmed was previously assured by three former Chief Ministers.
Fatorda MLA Vijai Sardesai highlighted a drop in flight operations and increased user development fees at Dabolim, alleging a plan to shut it down and demanding equal fees at both airports.