US-India aviation partnership is about ensuring a free, open Indo-Pacific: US envoy

Eric Garcetti, Jyotiraditya Scindia. (IANS Photo)

Eric Garcetti, Jyotiraditya Scindia. (IANS Photo)

New Delhi, March 27 (IANS): US Ambassador Eric Garcetti said on Wednesday that the US-India aviation partnership is about creating jobs and ensuring a free and open Indo-Pacific as he met Minister for Civil Aviation, Jyotiraditya Scindia, and had a 'fruitful discussion' with him.

Minister Scindia and Ambassador Garcetti discussed the seventh US-India Aviation Summit, scheduled to be held in Washington, from June 24-26 this year.

"Had a fruitful discussion with Union Minister for Civil Aviation @JM_Scindia regarding the upcoming US-India Aviation Summit in Washington. The #USIndia aviation partnership isn't just about flights; it's about creating jobs and ensuring a free and open Indo-Pacific," Ambassador Garcetti said in a post on X on Wednesday.

After the meeting, which was held on Tuesday, Scindia said that he had a "productive discussion" with the envoy on a "variety of Indo-US matters, including areas of collaboration in the aviation and steel sectors".

The US Trade and Development Agency (USTDA) is holding this Summit under the US-India Aviation Cooperation Program, a public-private partnership comprising American aviation firms active in India's aviation market.

The upcoming event will foster dialogue between Indian civil aviation authorities and industry and their US counterparts in both public and private sectors.

It will also serve as a showcase for advanced US technology, equipment, services, and best practices tailored to meet India's expansion requirements, the USTDA said.

In March 2023, India announced plans to invest $12 billion over two years to construct new airports and update existing ones as part of an effort to improve regional connectivity.

"In the last 10 years, India's civil aviation industry has experienced expansive growth, bolstered by the integration of low-cost carriers into the nation's airline fleet, the construction of new airports, and the focus on increasing regional connectivity among the Indian states," the USTDA added.

From January-October 2023, the Indian market witnessed nearly 1.3 billion passengers, an increase of 24 per cent over the same period in 2022.

According to projections by the US aircraft manufacturer, Boeing, India's aviation market will grow 6.9 per cent annually until 2040, outpacing other high-growth regions, including Southeast Asia, China and Africa.

An analysis conducted by European aircraft manufacturer Airbus said that to meet growing passenger air traffic demand, India might need nearly 2,210 new aircraft and around 430 million additional passenger flights over the next 20 years.

The sixth US-India Aviation Summit was held in Mumbai in May 2018 and was formally inaugurated by Suresh Prabhu, the then Minister for Civil Aviation.