x Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 26 July 2017

Midfield one of three parts of capital's grand plan

The construction of Abu Dhabi International Airport's Midfield Terminal is one of the three crucial legs on which the emirate¿s 2030 vision will stand.

The construction of Abu Dhabi International Airport's Midfield Terminal is one of the three crucial legs on which the emirate's 2030 vision will stand.

Together with the Kizad industrial zone and the hugely ambitious tourism and cultural projects, the new airport facility that will arise around Midfield will be a key catalyst in making an oil-independent economy possible.

When the airport project was first announced by the Abu Dhabi Government, the aim was to create a primary gateway for airlines flying to Abu Dhabi and a better home for Etihad Airways.

"The approval of the Executive Council on the capacity expansion programme for Abu Dhabi International Airport confirms Abu Dhabi's commitment to deliver a world-class airport for the emirate that will be on a par with the best international airports in the world," Khalifa Al Mazrouei, the chairman of Abu Dhabi Airports Company (Adac), said at the time.

"This development represents one of the largest investments by the Government to deliver the needed infrastructure, in line with Abu Dhabi Plan 2030, that will cater to the growth of the aviation sector in the region and confirms Abu Dhabi's strong position in the global air transportation network."

Since then, Etihad Airways' aggressive expansion has seen the airline become the fastest-growing in the world, with the goal of making Abu Dhabi a premier leisure destination and a hub between North America and Europe and the growing markets of India, China and South East Asia.

Last week, the International Air Transport Association said its global traffic results for March showed Middle East airlines' demand jumped by more than a fifth compared with the same month last year, the largest rate of growth for any region. The report said passenger growth for the Middle East's airlines was up 20.9 per cent, underpinned by a 12.4 per cent rise in capacity.

The airport expansion will also involve Etihad's work to establish Abu Dhabi as a major air freight interchange for the region.

dblack@thenational.ae

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