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Addu International Airport operating at risk: Airport Director

18 July 2019, MVT 15:01
Addu International Airport in Gan, Addu Atoll. PHOTO: MIHAARU FILES
18 July 2019, MVT 15:01

Addu International Airport (AIA)'s Managing Director Ibrahim Noordeen, on Wednesday, revealed that the airport faces substantial risks and fail to meet modern-day standards, as per audit reports.

Speaking at the Parliamentary Committee on State-Owned Enterprises (SOE), Noordeen stated that no pieces of equipment were upgraded since the airport was redeveloped in 1984 through the Australian Aid.

"Even the (airport traffic control) tower has the same equipment from then. Operating in this state is a big risk", said Noordeen.

According to the director, redevelopment of the airport was planned out in two phases. However, he iterated that the runway extension of the second phase only concluded recently.

Additionally, he noted that previous plans to increase the airports' capacity to cater to large aircrafts have failed to actualize.

Moreover, he associated the airport's degrading condition with successive administrations' failure to focus on developing the airport.

While 70 percent of AIA is owned by the state, the remaining 30 percent was acquired for MVR 60 million in 2012.

The airport was originally built by the United Kingdom as a staging post for its Royal Air Force during the 1950s and was handed over to Maldives in 1976.