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Opening of new Huaphan airport delayed yet again

Completion of a new airport in Xamneua district, Huaphan province, has been delayed for a third time because of the effects of the pandemic and the contractor’s budget constraints.
An official in charge of the project told Vientiane Times on Tuesday the project is again on hold and the contractor is waiting for advice from the government concerning the situation.
As of June 2020, the airport was 92.34 percent complete and had been on track for completion by the end of 2020.
The Vietnamese Hoang Anh Gia Lai Joint Stock Company (HAGL) began construction of the airport at the end of 2014 but had to suspend work in 2015 after encountering financial difficulties.
The airstrip had originally been scheduled for completion at the end of 2016.
The project was first given the green light in June 2013 when the government, represented by the Department of Civil Aviation, signed a contract with HAGL worth more than US$74 million (about 616 billion kip).
After work was suspended, the Ministry of Public Works and Transport extended the agreement with the company from December 20, 2017 to June 2019.
When it becomes operational, the airport will be able to accommodate aircraft with 70 to 100 seats, such as the ATR72, bringing more visitors to the province.    
Laos’ main airports are Wattay International Airport in Vientiane, and airports in Luang Prabang, Oudomxay, Savannakhet, Champassak and Bokeo provinces.
Elsewhere, the runway at Huayxai Airport in Bokeo province is currently being extended to better serve regional transport needs and accommodate the growth of investment and tourism.



By Phomphong Laoin
(Latest Update
January 6,
2021)


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