Kavieng Airport in New Ireland Province will soon be developed into an international standard Airport at a cost of K91.85million.
The ground-breaking ceremony marking the commencement of work, was held on July 15th in Kavieng, hosted by the New Ireland Provincial Government and its people.
“Work at the airport will include strengthening of the aircraft pavement, extension of the current runway by 500 metres, a new terminal building, airfield lighting and associated works,” said Civil Aviation Minister, Lekwa Gure.
Minister Gure added that the upgrade at Kavieng Airport like all the other airports upgraded or currently being upgraded under the Civil Aviation Development Improvement Program (CADIP) will ensure that the bar for airport services throughout PNG, is raised to a new level.
"Aircraft and passenger processing are or will takes place within a safe and secure airport operating environment. There will be a marked improvement in the level of service for the travelling passengers and airlines will have much improved working environment resulting in efficient passenger processing, improved cargo handling as well as much improved level of passenger comfort,” the Minister said.
Once completed, Kavieng Airport will be able to accommodate larger aircraft like the B737-800 series, and can also accommodate two - F100 aircraft at the same time.
This will mean more passengers and cargo movement in and out of the province to support social and economic activities in the province.
Improving key critical infrastructures and services of the transport sector is part of the National Government’s top investment priorities for socio- economic growth.
This is detailed in the National Government’s Vision 2050 to ensure that there is connectivity between the rural areas and the urban centres and that the rural population have access to goods and services, hence, simultaneously boosting economic growth through agriculture, tourism and other business opportunities.
Currently, more than 10 national airports in the country are undergoing major upgrading works through the National Airports Corporation’s Civil Aviation Development Investment Program or CADIP.
CADIP was established in 2009 and is co-funded by the Government of PNG in partnership with the Asian Development Bank at a total cost of K1.67 billion Kina through the Multi Tranche Finance Facility Arrangement (MFF).
The three main objectives for CADIP are;
- To improve airports and air traffic services infrastructure to ensure compliance with CASA PNG Civil Aviation Rules (CARs) and the International Civil Aviation Organisation Standards and Recommended Practices (SARPs) relating to aviation safety and security standards;
- Upgrade selected airports to increase capacity to accommodate larger aircraft in response to growth in air transport; and
- Capacity building and institutional strengthening of the NAC, PNG Air Services Limited and the CASA PNG.
Since 2009, CADIP has been delivering priority civil aviation projects through 3 Tranches. Tranche 1 projects commenced in 2009 and ended in 2015. Tranche 2 projects commenced in 2014 and will end in 2021. Tranche 3 projects commenced in 2017 and will conclude in 2021.
Kavieng Airport upgrade project is part of Tranche 3 ongoing projects.
China Railway Construction Engineering Group Company Limited who recently won the contract to upgrade Kavieng airport have begun mobilising onsite to commence work.