Chisinau International Airport’s concessionaire says ready to start implementing project

The Avia Invest Company, to which the Chisinau International Airport was leased for a 49-year period, has informed that it was ready to start carrying out the project.

"We are ready to fulfil the terms of the contract signed in early September, with the reconstruction of the airfield," the deputy director for development of the company Avia Invest, Tatiana Semyonova, said at a press conference October 16. She added that procedures to take over assets were presently being performed.

The first thing to be urgently done is the reconstruction and modernising of the runway, that was built in 1987, so the deadline for its exploitation expired in 2007, said Semionova. Also the eight secondary runways need to be upgraded, in order to be able to accommodate category C airplanes. Forty two aircraft parking spaces are planned to be made in all.

"We will also develop air transport services, and for this, we will need to rebuild the platform," said the development director of the lease company.

"The first stage of the reconstruction and modernisation of the Chisinau International Airport will start in 2014 and will be completed in 2016," said Semyonova. She also said that after the planned modernization of the terminal, 1100 people per hour would be serviced, as compared to 600 today.

Investments amounting to 45 million euros will be made in the first phase of the project. The transit area will be developed because the Airport’s lease company wants to increase airport transit flow by creating better conditions, especially to Europe, which would correspond to the C and A categories. In addition, the number of parking spaces will increase.

Referring to the second stage of the project, Tatiana Semionova said that the airport’s modernisation and platform expansion will continue. A freight terminal will also be constructed, so as to increase its capacity fourfold, from 2,000 tons per year to 8-9 thousand. A new passenger terminal will be built. "By 2025, we hope to reach a passenger flow of 3 million people and for the number of parking spaces to be extended up to 1,500 places," said the deputy director of the development company Avia Invest.

"In order to achieve a number of 3-4-5 million passengers per year, we will have to move faster than our regional competitors and develop the airlines," said Semyonova.

The government decided to lease the Chisinau International Airport to a Russian company, which committed to invest over 240 million euros in the next 49 years. The first investment of about 45 million will be made during the first two years; the other investments are subject to whether the passenger traffic increases. When they will have reached 2.6 million passengers annually, the company will invest another 115 million euros, by building a new terminal, new parking, extending the security band, etc. If the passenger flow reaches 3.2 million passengers annually, investments amounting to 83 million euros will be made.

The Chisinau International Airport lease contract was appealed at the Constitutional Court by a group of Liberal Reformers and Communist MPs. The Constitutional Court rejected the appeals, on grounds that it is not within the Court’s competence to examine the constitutionality of the government decision the airport’s lease. According to the Constitutional Court, the decisions of the Government on this matter may be legally reviewed by the common law courts.

Adapted from moldpres