MTCC to develop runway of new airport in Maldives north

Government on Monday contracted Maldives Transport and Contracting Company (MTCC) to develop the runway at a domestic airport being developed in the island of Kulhudhuffushi in Haa Dhaal atoll.

Saamy Ageel, the Director General at Regional Airports, and MTCC CEO Ibrahim Ziyath signed an agreement to hand over the project to the public company.

Ageel told reporters that MTCC would develop a 1.2 kilometre runway along with an apron and a taxiway. The company is required to complete the project in 160 days, he aded.

Ziyath noted the technical capacity of his company.

“We’ve carried out similar projects, including the development of an airport in Thimarafushi island,” he said.

MTCC had earlier reclaimed six hectares off the southern coast of Kulhudhuffushi and another nine hectares from the island’s wetlands for the airport.

The land is being reclaimed using a brand new dredger brought in by the Maldives Transport and Contracting Company (MTCC).

President Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom has earlier told his supporters that flights will land at the Kulhudhuffushi airport before the end of August next year.

Over a million tourists from across the globe visit the Indian Ocean island nation every year to holiday in one of the 120 resorts and 400 plus guesthouses located in all corners of the country. The multi-billion dollar tourism industry, which is the country’s main economic activity, relies heavily on the domestic transport infrastructure, especially air travel.

Maldives, the most dispersed country on the planet with 1,192 islands spread over roughly 90,000 square kilometres, already has 11 airports, including three international airports. The government has contracted both local and international companies to develop additional domestic airports across the archipelago in a bid to boost tourism.

Photo: Avas Online

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