The Tamil Nadu government has urged the Union government to clear the hurdles faced in the expansion of four airports in the state and declare the Madurai airport as an international airport following the land acquisition and transfer to the Airports Authority of India. State Finance Minister Palanivel Thiaga Rajan, who took part in the Chief Ministers and State Finance Ministers conference led by Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Monday, November 15, requested the Union government to formulate a data-sharing protocol thereby allowing states to access data like income tax, Aadhaar, COVID-19, among others.
"The minister sought the cooperation of the Union government to resolve the bottlenecks being faced in the expansion of four major airports, Chennai, Coimbatore, Tiruchirappalli and Tuticorin," an official release said. Rajan informed Sitharaman, at the meeting held on virtual mode, that the land acquisition and transfer of Madurai Airport to Airports Authority of India have been completed and urged the Union government to declare it as an international airport soon to facilitate more trade and flights to the region.
The Finance Minister requested the Union government to formulate a data-sharing protocol that allows the states access to data like income tax, COVID-19, AADHAR, among others, to supplement the efforts of states towards a data-driven administration. He said the recent reduction in prices of petrol and diesel by the Union government has provided a golden opportunity to conduct a case study to analyse the impact of price on elasticity of demand and supply and on growth in general.
Rajan requested the government to ensure adequate and continuous supply of coal and to help in the access to supplies of Chandrabila Coal Block in Odisha. He highlighted the wind energy potential in the State and urged Sitharaman to formulate a viable offshore wind development policy to give an impetus to renewable energy. He said the VO Chidambaranar Port in Tuticorin has potential to be a transhipment hub, and that a master plan for expansion of the port with outer harbour project may be taken up soon.
Rajan said the economy of Tamil Nadu has been resilient despite the pandemic and informed Sitharaman that the Chief Minister MK Stalin presided over two investment conclaves in which companies made investment commitment of Rs 21,021 crore by signing 50 memoranda of understanding with the government that would see creation of one lakh jobs.
The Finance Minister requested the Union government to announce a comprehensive revival package to support the micro, small and medium enterprises which have been affected by the COVID-19 outbreak.