Ethiopia plans to build new Addis airport

Monday, March 17, 2014-ADDIS ABABA – Ethiopia plans to build a new international airport on the outskirts of capital Addis Ababa, the Ethiopian Airports Enterprise (EAE) said Monday.”The enterprise has already identified three locations for the construction of the new airport,” EAE head of public relations Wondim Teklu told Anadolu Agency.

According Teklu, traffic through the city’s main airport, the Addis Ababa Bole International Airport, is growing by 22 percent per year and a new airport is needed to accommodate the increases.

“Modjo and Dukem, respectively located 70km and 30km southeast of Addis Ababa, as well as Tefki, 39km west of the capital, are the suggested sites to build the airport,” he said.”Bidding will be arranged for consultancy to select the site and also for the design work,” he added. “Once the appropriate site is selected, the next step will be to look into the cost and financial sources for the construction of the airport,” Teklu noted.

Simultaneously, the Addis Ababa Bole International Airport – which currently processes 150 flights a day – will be expanded with the use of a $225-million loan from the Export-Import Bank of China (China Exim). China Communications Construction Company (CCCC) will carry out the work, which will include the expansion of the main passengers’ terminal and construction of a modern VIP terminal, Teklu said.”The expansion work will be carried out in a way to efficiently utilize space and give improved service to passengers,” he said

The new terminal will be able to serve some 22 million passengers annually. The existing terminal can currently serve only 6.5 million passengers a year.

Teklu said that a previous airport upgrade ten years ago had increased the capacity of the airport apron to allow it to accommodate 45 large aircraft, up from a previous 19.

When the previous airport expansion project was undertaken at a total cost of 1.2 billion Ethiopian birr (roughly $62 million), it had been assumed that the airport would be able to absorb anticipated traffic increases until 2017.