Langkawi International Airport is getting too small to accommodate the growing number of passengers, which is why it will receive an upgrade worth RM89 million.
The upgrade and expansion will be completed by August 2018 and will consist of two phases. The first phase will include work on the facilities and the parking area, while the second phase will consist of work on the commercial section, airport’s arrival area, main terminal driveway, toilets and surau (an Islamic assembly area).
Tajul Urus Mat Zain, Kedah Transport Committee chairman said yesterday in Alor Setar at the Kedah state assembly:
The RM89mil allocation had been approved by the National Economic Council, chaired by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak on June 5. Works for the first phase are expected to start on Sept 1 and scheduled for completion by Oct 15. The tender process of the first phase opened on July 24 and closed on Aug 9. Eighteen companies took part in the tender process.
He also added that phase two of Langkawi International Airport will begin on 15th October and is scheduled for completion by 31st August next year.
One of the main targets for the airport will be more chartered flights this year. By 31st July, the airport welcomed 23 chartered flights and to bring in more, the Langkawi Development Authority is negotiating with several international carriers, including Air India, Qatar Airways, Emirates Airlines, Finland’s Finnair, Germany’s Tuifly Airlines, Thailand’s Happy Air and Singaporean Scoot Airlines.
The Kedah Transport Committee chairman also said:
There are now international routes to Langkawi International Airport from Singapore and China with the latest by China Southern Airlines, from Guangzhou to Langkawi. AirAsia is also planning to increase its frequency from Shenzhen to Langkawi.
According to Mr. Tajul, Langkawi Airport welcomed 278 direct flights as of 31st July in this year, which was 22.4% more than during the same period last year. Most of these flights were AirAsia, Malaysia Airlines, Firefly, Malindo Air, China Southern and Tiger Air.
Last year, the airport handled 2.7 million passenger movements, 13.6% more than in the previous year.