This picture taken from the Facebook page of Tourism Minister Yogesh Bhattarai shows a sketch of an airport.
November 22: The Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal (CAAN) is preparing to initiate the process to call tenders for upgrading the capacity of the Bhairahawa-based Gautam Buddha International Airport and the Tribhuvan International Airport (TIA) in Kathmandu.
CAAN took such step after the Asian Development Bank (ADB) has approved an additional loan of Rs 18 billion for the purpose.
A board meeting of the bank had recently approved a loan of USD 150 million for upgrading the major airports of Nepal.
Director General of CAAN Rajan Pokharel informed that they have already signed an agreement with the ADB and are now in the implementation phase.
Major portion of the loan will be utilized to build a second terminal building at the Gautam Buddha International Airport. Construction of taxi way, apron and parking lots are the other areas where the loan will be used.
“The works will be undertaken as per the master plans of TIA and Gautam Buddha International Airport. As we have already signed an agreement with ADB, we will soon begin the tender process,” Pokharel said.
CAAN had earlier upgraded the runway of TIA with the support from the ADB.
According to CAAN, they are currently working on the design of the second terminal building of Gautam Buddha International Airport. It is estimated to cost around Rs 10 billion to complete all the works of the Bhairahawa-based airport. This is the second phase of construction of Gautam Buddha International Airport. Pokharel informed that the first phase of construction was also undertaken with the funding from ADB.
Director General Pokharel informed that they planning to complete the construction works by the end of 2020.
The construction of Gautam Buddha International Airport was initiated in 2020. Currently, the construction of the airport’s runway, terminal building and other infrastructures have been completed while the installation of equipment is still pending.
CAAN informed that they need to bring technical experts from abroad for the work but were unable to do so on time due to the coronavirus pandemic. Pokharel added that the installation works will begin soon as international flights have resumed and the government has started issuing visas to the technical experts.
Two construction companies have been awarded the contracts to build the Gautam Buddha International Airport. Construction of physical infrastructure of the airport is being undertaken by a Chinese company named Northwest Civil Aviation Construction Company while the contract for installing equipment has been given to Aero Thai.