Air Expansion Continues with Airport and Route Growth

More than $150bn of airport and logistics infrastructure is being considered, according to estimates reported by AME Info FZ. Interested bidders include British Aviation Group, German Airports Group, Gulf Ground Handling Association, Middle East Aerospace Consortium, and others.

The first exhibition to get air investment truly off the ground will be the Iraq Airport Expansion, Cargo Logistics Conference and Exhibition. It is being held from the 6th to the 7th April 2011 in the city of Erbil, Kurdistan, which has a new, $550m airport with the fourth longest runway in the world.

Air expansion is being supported by increasing numbers of airline routes to Iraq, with Gulf News reporting yesterday yet another route opened from Dubai from budget airline flydubai. Flydubai has just 26 routes, but now two of them are to Kurdistan with the first to Erbil and the new second one to Sulaimaniyah. Flydubai CEO Ghaith Al Ghaith said: "The service to Sulaimaniyah underlines Flydubai's commitment and confidence in the country of Iraq, which has attracted a lot of investment from the UAE."

There has been a steady stream of new routes to Iraq, with Aigle Azur, for example, announcing a Paris to Baghdad route two weeks ago and Air Berlin setting up two routes from Dusseldorf: again to Erbil and Sulaimaniyah.

(Source: AME Info FZ and GulfNews)

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