Huge potential for international air traffic
The Indian Chamber of Commerce and Industry here has urged the Airports Authority of India (AAI) and the Civil Aviation Ministry to extend the runway and create additional facilities at the Tuticorin airport.
In a memorandum submitted to S. Machendranathan, Special Secretary and Financial Adviser, Ministry of Civil Aviation, the Chamber secretary, D.R. Kodeeswaran, argued that in view of the brisk export-import trade, thanks to the V.O. Chidambaranar Port in Tuticorin, the airport needed to be upgraded to boost industries in the southern districts.
He called for developing it along the lines of Dubai airport, as there was a huge potential for international cargo transhipment from Tuticorin.
For Tuticorin airport to acquire international standards, Mr.Kodeeswaran recommended the acquisition of a thousand acres and extension of the runway to 9,000 feet, apart from other modernising measures.
Based on survey results that showed that a substantial segment of the passengers travelling to Sri Lanka from the State hailed from Tuticorin and Tirunelveli districts, airlines would be interested in operating services to Sri Lanka from Tuticorin.
People were expecting the resumption of ferry service between Tuticorin and Colombo, Mr. Kodeeswaran added.