NAC seeks N$143m from financial providers

11 February 2021 | Transport

ELLANIE SMIT



WINDHOEK

The Namibia Airports Company (NAC) plans to invest over N$1.3 billion in infrastructure development across all eight airports in the country within the next five years.

Speaking at a stakeholder visit at the Hosea Kutako International Airport for financial service providers, the CEO of NAC, Bisey /Uirab, said this is aimed at improving compliance, operational efficiency and revenue generation.

According to /Uirab, immediate interventions have included N$250 million for the Hosea Kutako terminal congestion alleviation project and N$20 million on the Eros runway holding action.

“These are meant to address immediate safety and security concerns at the two airports as well as the congestion situation particularly at Hosea Kutako.”

He said they still want to do more upgrades at the Eros airport, but for now they are satisfied that at least the runway is usable.

Seeking funding

/Uirab said the NAC is currently seeking to secure a further N$143 million in funds for capital expenditure projects planned within the 2020/2021 and 2021/2022 financial years.

He said lined-up projects planned within the following financial year include the expansion of the Hosea Kutako apron, which will cost about N$70 million, as well as installing the Common Use Terminal Equipment system at the airport. This system will allow for self-service check-in at the airport and costs about N$16 million.

Meanwhile, the Ondangwa airport apron is also to be rehabilitated to the tune of N$16 million, while the Katima Mulilo airport’s runway is to be upgraded at a cost of N$32 million.

Upgrading the boundary wall of the Walvis Bay airport will cost N$10 million. On top of this, electronical equipment needed at the Walvis Bay airport will cost N$4 million, while upgrades on the road to Hosea Kutako will also be about N$4 million.

‘Significant progress’

Speaking about some of the goals the NAC has achieved, /Uirab said it has made significant progress in improving internal processes including procurement and project management.

Hosea Kutako has experienced a remarkable growth in passenger movements since 2016 because of the introduction of international airlines and routes. However, this has been severely hampered by the coronavirus pandemic, he said.

“The darkness we face today will not last forever,” /Uirab said.

He also stressed that the company has significantly reduced the number of legal cases instituted against it over the past two years – from about 30 cases to just one currently.

Million-dollar project

The N$250 million Hosea Kutako congestion alleviation project is expected to double the airport's handling capacity, while it is expected to accommodate increased passenger movements until 2030. The government allocated N$155 million for the project through the works ministry, while the NAC committed N$95 million from its coffers.

Furthermore, the expansion of the apron will be able to accommodate current and future demand, including aircraft parking stands, in compliance with International Civil Aviation Organisation standards.

The works will also allow for separation between the international and domestic passengers once both terminal one and two are completed. Terminal two, which will only be used for international passengers, is set to be completed by end of March. Terminal one will be separated into two areas - for VIPs and domestic travellers. This terminal will be completed by the end of June.

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