Big contract due for Sharjah airport expansion

Masterplan to be reviewed after airport reaches full capacity

NEWS, Business, Airport, Contract

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Sharjah International Airport is working on a new masterplan for its expansion after it reached full capacity, a senior official told Emirates 24/7.

Ghanem Al Hajri, Chairman of Sharjah Airport Authority, said: "We are developing a new masterplan because we have crossed the capacity of seven million passengers in 2012.

"We are reviewing the masterplan in order to meet the expansion needs of the airport. The review is underway, and the result is expected by the end of this year; so accordingly we will announce the expansion plan."

Sharjah International Airport handled over 7.5 million passengers last year compared to 6.6 million in the previous year, registering 13.6% growth.

Aircraft movements rose 3.5% to 65,975 during in 2012 compared to 63,737 in the previous year. It handled 419,116 tonnes cargo last year.

Al Hajri said: "By the end of this year we will be able to announce the expansion plan and sign the contract (or the expansion of the airport."

Growth was largely attributed to the rapid expansion of Air Arabia, now the largest source of passenger traffic at Sharjah International Airport, as well as the attractiveness of Sharjah as a business and tourist destination and an efficient transit point.

The World Economic Forum rated the UAE's air transport infrastructure as the world's third best in its World Travel and Tourism Competitiveness report.

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