ten ton air cargo capacity at the Gannavaram airport in Vijaywada near the new
Andhra Pradesh capital is lying idle while acua and agricultural exporters from
the state continue to prefer dealing with distant Hyderabad airport though it
is nearly three per cent expensive.
The air cargo
handling capacity in the Gannavaram airport, which has been functional since
August 1 , is hardly being used by aqua and agricultural exporters, though it
happens to be the cheaper way as compared to the one they use for
transportation of cargo.
A leading Logistics
provider in the city said, “It costs Rs 12 per kg to handle goods from
Vijayawada to Delhi while it costs Rs 32 per kg to delivert them from Hyderabad
to Delhi. Sir, some exporters are opting to export from Hyderabad may be out of
the old habit that the City was their capital for decades and are unaware of
the cheaper cargo service available from Gannavaram airport..”
Despite the appeals
from the Logistics industry, there has been no change in the situation. “Though
we have held several meetings to deal directly with the farmers, the response
was not that encouraging. The industry plans to engage with them once more in a
bid to educate them on the advantages of handling goods from the local airport.
We will conduct seminars and workshops to raise awareness among them, said the
This ignorance is
leaving a huge potential untapped, as Delhi’s prices of aquaculture and
agricultural products are more than triple the prices in Andhra Pradesh.
The good news is
that the budget airline Indigo will start operating flights from Gannavaram
airport from next month when the cargo handling capacity of the airport will go
up to 12 tons.
A spokesman of the
airport said Indigo is to park its first aircraft in Gannavaram airport on
September 15 and bring in the rest of its three aircrafts, ‘in phases. The airline
has not yet decided the destination of the flights. “They have taken permission
to operate from September 1 but have decided to be prudent and start operating
their first aircraft from September 15; they will introduce the rest three in
phases based on the passenger traffic.”
The Marine Products
Exports Development Authority (MPEDA), said they have conducted meetings with
the Aqua exporters about the cost advantages of handling them at Gannavaram
airport and hence they do not move their products to Hyderabad.