The Department of Airports (DoA) is seeking a budget of 40 million baht to fund an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) study on the expansion of Nan’s airport, which is expecting an increase in passenger traffic going forward.
According to DoA Deputy Director-General Jaroon Meesomboon, the agency intends to request a 40 million baht budget from the government to initially conduct the assessment of the airport runway expansion and construction of a new terminal. The runway would need to be extended from 2,000 to 2,500 meters in length in order to accommodate larger planes.
Jaroon snoted that if the requested funding is approved, the three-year project could begin in 2025 and the runway expansion’s construction phase in 2027. He added, however, that the budget for the entire airport improvement project will be determined only after a thorough review of the EIA report.
Once the expansion is complete, the airport will be able to receive international flights, particularly from China, as well as domestic flights from major locations outside of Bangkok, such as Phuket.
Prior to the pandemic, Nan received approximately 1 million annual visitors. Tourists are once again flocking to the upper northern province following the relaxation of disease prevention measures.
Thai AirAsia, Nok Air, Thai Smile and Thai Lion Air currently operate nine weekly flights to Nan, down from 12 prior to the pandemic. Thai Viet Jet is also seeking approval to operate daily direct flights between Suvarnabhumi airport and the northern province.
Nan airport currently handles a daily average of about 1,000 passengers, down from 1,700-2,000 prior to the pandemic. (NNT)