Maldives Airports Company Limited (MACL) today has said that the compensation payable if the agreement with Ibrahim Nasir International Airport (INIA) operator GMR, India is annulled would be relatively low.
In response to the claims that the State would have to pay USD700 million if the GMR agreement is cancelled, MACL’s Managing Director stressed that the amount is relatively small to the revenue that can be generated by running the airport for 25 years.
MD stressed that estimates show that with the fees being charged by GMR, MACL could generate MVR60 billion in 25 years by operating the airport.
“If we continue to allow the airport to be operated as it is now, a loss of MVR60 billion would be incurred in 25 years. If we run the airport the income generated is for the Maldivian government and its people. In addition, if the MACL is running the airport, the Duty Free and other businesses would be operated by Maldivians,” Managing Director detailed.
The MD further added that the agreement had clauses that would enable the MACL to annul the agreement if it wishes to do so. On that note, the Managing Director said that the agreement could be annulled without involving arbitration or any other processes.
“If the MACL wants, it has the ability to terminate the agreement through dialogue. But that would come at a cost. But if the revenue from 25 years is considered, the cost would be relatively small,” MD explained.
Managing Director also revealed that the entire MACL board agreed that the country’s economy faces major losses if the INIA is operated in the present manner.