Thai airports service 74 million passengers last year

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BANGKOK, Jan 5 – More than 74 million passengers passed through six airports in Thailand last year, a 12 percent increase from the previous year, the Airports of Thailand (AoT) reported.

Somchai Sawasdeepon, AoT Senior Executive Vice President Engineering and Construction and Acting President, said 46 million passengers were non-Thais while 496,749 flights – 275,422 of them international – landed at the six airports,  representing a 10.5 percent growth.

The six airports are Suvarnabhumi, Dong Meaung, Chiang Mai, Hat Yai, Phuket and Chiang Rai.

Suvarnabhumi airport alone received 51.462 million passengers and 312,493 flights last year.

As for the Phase 2 expansion of Suvarnabhumi airport under the 2011-2017 development budget, Mr Somchai said the AoT has already hired a consultant firm, EPM Consortium, to map out conditions for a bid on the design while the winning company should be announced in April.

The designs which will take 10 months, between May and February next year, will involve three major projects: the passenger buildings, public utilities system and construction, he said, adding that the contractors and construction inspectors should be hired in August next year.

Mr Somchai said Phuket airport will have the capacity of servicing 12.5 million passengers when the four-year expansion completes in 2014. Its current service capacity is 6.5 million passengers.

He added that the improvement of Don Meaung airport will include the Terminal 2 passenger building, the concourse building 5, the seven-storey parking building, communications system and public utilities system.

The expansion will boost Don Meaung’s capability to 27.5 million passengers or adequate until 2026, he said.