NewDelhi: India opened its first exclusive terminal for private airplanes to cater to the world’s fastest growing ultra-rich population. The new terminal at the Indira Gandhi International Airport will allow movement of 150 jets daily, Delhi International Airport Ltd. said in a statement. The new terminal will be able to handle over 50 passengers an hour. This will make movement of business jets and chartered aircraft easier, a long-pending demand of Indian billionaires seeking friendlier skies with a network of airports just for private jets.
India’s ultra-rich population has grown 116% in the five years to 2018 and is expected to rise 37% by 2023, according to Knight Frank. An exclusive wing will allow the private jets to skirt the rush at passenger terminals. India’s fleet of business jets is expected to expand more than 900% to 1,320 aircraft by 2033, according to estimates from Bombardier Inc.
The use of private planes is also expected to get a boost because of the coronavirus pandemic as the super-rich prefer chartered flights for safer travel. Business jets can also be used as air ambulances, and are able to fly to remote areas. It can also make India more investor-friendly as Prime Minister Narendra Modi lures businesses to come to India.