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Bangkok budget airport to double capacity by 2016

Don Mueang Airport, Bangkok’s budget airline facility, will boost its capability to take 27.5 million passengers annually in 2016, an airport executive said today.

Olivier Languepin

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Don Mueang Airport, Bangkok’s budget airline facility, will boost its capability to take 27.5 million passengers annually in 2016, an airport executive said today.

Don Mueang Airport director Paranee Wattanotai said Terminal II is being developed to cope with expanded service capacity given its clear-cut role as an aviation facility for low-cost airlines.

Combined with Suvarnabhumi Airport, Thailand will serve as a gateway for 87.5 million passengers a year in 2016, she said.

Don Mueang Airport

By the end of this year, Don Mueang should have 153,000 flights and 16.9 million passengers

She said the relocation of AirAsia to Don Mueang Airport has significantly boosted the aviation traffic to 54,694 flights in the first five months of the 2013 fiscal year (Oct 2012-Feb 2013) – 15,283 international and 39,411 domestic.

By the end of this year, Don Mueang should have 153,000 flights and 16.9 million passengers, she added.

Friday marks the 99th anniversary of Don Mueang Airport. (MCOT online news) Read More Here : Don Mueang Airport to pass 27 million passengers in 3 years | MCOT.net

Thailand as the region’s budget airlines hub

Low-cost passenger movement at Suvarnabhumi reached 16m last year, forcing the government to rethink its plans to shift all commercial flights to the main airport.

Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra recently states that she wants to boost Thailand as the region’s budget airlines hub and vowed to expand airports in tourism provinces to accept more overseas travelers.

Until recently, the plan to close Don Mueang as a scheduled services airport following the opening of Suvarnabhumi in 2006 remained in place. However, following the shift in policy, Airports of Thailand (AoT), the state-run enterprise which manages both airports, commenced a BT1.09bn ($33m) rehabilitation programme at the flood-damaged older airport.

A massive programme of investment in Thailand’s infrastructure, designed to enhance international connectivity and competitiveness, is set to be implemented this year amid a renewed commitment to investment and regional development.

The government is lining up 55 projects worth Bt2.27trn ($76.27bn) to be executed by 2020, with Bt100bn ($3.36bn) allocated in the 2013 fiscal year, the local press reported on January 18. The projects come under the government’s long-term development plan, but are being accelerated due to new commitments to investment and regional development, including liberalisation in neighbouring Myanmar, and the roll-out of the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC).

According to the Ministry of Tourism and Sports, Thailand has achieved record-breaking visitor arrivals, crossing the 22 million mark for the first time in 2012. Figures tabulated by the Ministry of Tourism and Sports for January — December 2012 show total arrivals by nationality of 22,303,065, up 15.98 percent over 2011.

Bangkok Correspondent for Siam News Network. Editor at Thailand Business News

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