8 APRIL 2013
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The inauguration of Qatar's massive new international airport at Doha last Monday (1 April) was sensationally delayed at the very final moment.
In a late-night announcement, Abdulaziz Al Noaimi, the Chairman of the New Doha International Airport (NDIA) Steering Committee, said they were forced to put off the low key inauguration as the airport did not meet the newly introduced safety and security requirements mandated by the Qatar Civil Defence Department (see BTN 23 March).
Originally slated to replace the existing Doha International Airport in 2009 the ambitious project, partly built on reclaimed land, has been fraught with costly delays.
However it is not the only airport with serious problems. At nearby Dubai a huge new operation, Al Maktoum International Airport, was opened for cargo only in 2010, passenger operations delayed and only announced this week. (SEE Luton to Dubai) In Germany, and acutely embarrassing, Willie Brandt Brandenburg is still in a state of flux with stories emulating that part of the terminal will have to be rebuilt to comply with the latest regulations. All this makes the Heathrow T5 and Madrid Barajas problems seem minor. www.qatarairways.com
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