Tak airport deemed unfit to serve as logistics hub

Tak airport deemed unfit to serve as logistics hub

Tak airport is not suitable for development as a logistical hub in the North despite its close proximity to a neighbouring country, according to an Airports of Thailand (AoT) study.

The AoT has no plans at this stage to take over management of three regional airports in Tak, Mae Sot and Phitsanulok from the Department of Airports, AoT president Nitinai Sirismatthakarn said.

The government has not issued any directive for the AoT to run the three airports, he added.

However, the AoT has been studying the feasibility of turning Tak airport on the western border with Myanmar into a logistical hub in the North.

For an airport to gain such a status, it must be served by a road network that can further distribute goods overland effectively.

Mr Nitinai said the AoT study found that although Tak was in close proximity to Myanmar with a further transport link to Bangladesh, the roads cut through a lot of mountainous terrain which adds to transport costs. Tak province is also not a major tourism destination.

In addition, there is an airport in nearby Mae Sot district which competes for traffic.

Mr Nitinai said the study concluded that Tak airport does not have sufficient potential to operate viably as a logistical centre.

Also, both Mae Sot and Tak airports have overlapping airspace, while runways at both airports must be improved and aerobridges built to accommodate large aircraft. They need to be easily accessible by road or rail transport.

The AoT president said an air logistics hub in the North should be between San Kamphaeng district of Chiang Mai and Ban Thi district of Lamphun.

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