AoT seeks govt's nod for B202bn plan to build new airports
Airports of Thailand Plc (AoT) will ask the new government to approve its 202-billion-baht development plan, including investing in new airports in Phuket and Chiang Mai.
The plan is meant to boost the passenger handling capacity of airports in the country, said AoT president Nitinai Sirismatthakarn.
Under the plan, a new Phuket airport would be built at a cost of 75 billion baht, and would handle 10 million passengers a year.
Another airport would be built in Chiang Mai for a reported cost of 15 billion baht. The new airport would handle at least 10 million passengers a year.
Once approved by the new government, it could take about one year to expropriate land for the two airports, Mr Nitinai said, adding that construction could take four years.
"The two airports could be launched in 2025 and both are likely to become international airports," the AoT president indicated.
Other projects under the plan include the third-phase development of Don Mueang airport costing 32 billion baht. The development is meant to spur the airport's passenger-handling capacity to 18 million passengers a year.
Work is under way to conduct an environment impact assessment (EIA), said Mr Nitinai.
Suvarnabhumi airport's 42-billion-baht second terminal is also included in the plan. For the second terminal, AoT plans to ask for official approval from the Transport Ministry and the National Economic and Social Development Board (NESDB). Most pre-construction tasks such as the EIA and design have been completed and the company is only waiting for the official nod from the ministry and the NESDB.
Suvarnabhumi's second terminal is expected to be completed between 2022 and 2023, he said.
The transfer of four airports in Udon Thani, Sakon Nakhon, Tak and Chumphon from the Department of Airports to AoT is also part of the plan. Improvements will be made at the four airports costing 3.5 billion baht, he said, adding that Udon Thani airport will be upgraded to be an international airport.
Negotiations about the transfers have been completed and the Transport Ministry is considering the matter before forwarding it to the cabinet for approval, Mr Nitinai noted.
Duty-free giant King Power recently secured three AoT contracts, covering the operations of duty-free shops and commercial areas of Suvarnabhumi airport as well as duty-free shops at three airports -- Phuket, Hat Yai and Chiang Mai.