India represents one of the largest markets for civil aviation in the world – but one that also possesses unique legal and business challenges. Between October 29 – 31, a U.S.-India Aviation Summit will be held in Washington, D.C., to examine such topics as air traffic management,aircraft environmental issues, safety certification, airport sustainability and general aviation development, among other subjects that are critical to an expanding aviation infrastructure.
Because India is a market of opportunity, but also challenge, there are many subjects that require attention of policy makers, legislators, regulators and lawyers. These include subjects such as taxation and import policies, limitation on foreign direct investment, land acquisition, concession arrangements with airport operators, public-private partnerships, regulatory strategy, aviation safety administration, and the relationship between India’s national and state governments. The articles here provide an introduction to many of these subjects as well as focused insight on several of the most pressing concerns.
In addition to guest editing this issue of India Law News, we have each contributed an article on different aspects of civil aviation in India. One article, The Many Challenges Facing Civil Aviation in India (Robert S. Metzger), is intended to cover the broad landscape of legal, business and regulatory issues that concern civil aviation in India. The second article, Greenfield or Brownfield—Green is the only option (Atul Sharma), looks specifically at the acute questions of how to reconcile necessary infrastructure growth with environmental protection. We thank also Dr. Vivek Lall, who heads the aviation enterprise of Reliance Industries, for his authorship of the introduction to this issue with an article entitled Civil Aviation in India—The View From 30,000 Feet. Our other articles focus on infrastructure issues and are contributed by distinguished Indian lawyers with active practices involved in aviation regulation and infrastructure. William Vivian John and Sumithra Suresh of Luthra&Luthra discuss regulatory challenges affecting airport development economics for private sector participation. Yogesh Singh, Pia Singh &Aditya Alok of the law firm Trilegal have written on obtaining land for airports and infrastructure. Amitabh Chaturvedi and Sumita Chauhan of Mine & Young discuss legal restraints on infrastructure development in the aviation sector.
We hope you find the above articles interesting and useful.
Robert S. Metzger is a shareholder at the law firm of Rogers Joseph O’Donnell, P.C., and is based in Washington, D.C. Mr. Metzger counsels leading U.S. and international companies in aviation and defense matters. He is a member of the Defense Executive Committee of the U.S.-India Business Council and has published several articles in international journals on the subject of the U.S.-India aerospace and defense industrial relationship. Mr. Metzger was a Research Fellow at the Center for Science & International Affairs, Harvard University Kennedy School of Government, and is a member of the International Institute of Strategic Studies (London). He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Atul Sharma is the Managing Partner of Legal Link, a New Delhi-based law firm. He has over 30 years of experience in civil and commercial litigation and arbitration in various sectors, including aviation, infrastructure, real estate, telecom and banking. He has wide experience in dispute resolution procedures and domestic and international arbitration. Atul has advised and represented clients in shareholder disputes arising out of the acquisition and sale of companies, as well as contentious regulatory matters, insolvency proceedings, and real estate and tender-related disputes. He also specializes in the infrastructure sector and has advised developers and contractors. In the last five years, Atul has advised on projects at airports in Istanbul, Turkey and Male’, Maldives, and four major airports in India—Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore and Hyderabad, in addition to other infrastructure projects like ports, transportation, power and water. Atul can be reached at email@example.com.