4 DECEMBER 2017
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Efforts by Kenya’s government to transform Nairobi into an aviation hub received a boost last week when the African Development Bank (AfDB) approved a US$160m (about £118m) loan for the expansion of Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA).
The project entails construction of a 4.9km (16,000ft) second runway to International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) Category II standards, including connecting taxiways, additional parking stands for aircraft and an air rescue firefighting unit.
The existing 4.1km single runway is operating at CAT I with a width of 45m.
AfDB infrastructure director Amadou Oumarou said the work was designed to improve reliability of air transport to and from JKIA by reducing delays at peak hours and costly flight diversions arising from “incidences” on the existing runway.
“In so doing,” he added, “the project will enhance regional integration and expand international trade via improved regional and international air connectivity, as well as facilitate high-value exports and imports and advance Kenya’s economy towards middle-income status.”
Officials say the new runway on completion will significantly increase business travel and tourism annually by 4.2% between 2026 and 2052, while two-way cargo traffic is projected to annually grow by 5.1% over the same period.
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