Thailand’s Cabinet has announced the approval of a USD 9 billion bid from a consortium led by skytrain operator, BTS Group Holdings, for the development of a third passenger terminal at the U-Tapao International Airport near Pattaya, on the southeastern coast. The consortium will also develop air cargo facilities and aviation maintenance centers. It is expected that the U-Tapao airport will have capacity of 60 million passengers per year once the expansion project is completed.
The consortium also includes Bangkok Airways Pcl and Sino-Thai Engineering & Construction Pcl (for the construction). The public-private partnership contract is due be to signed on 19 June 2020. Narita International Airport Corp. will be in charge of managing the airport.
This project is part of the Eastern Economic Corridor, a USD 54 billion development plan to build infrastructure and foster advanced industries on Thailand’s eastern seaboard, to attract investment from industries like auto and tech manufacturing. In 2019, for a related megaproject under the EEC plans, a consortium led by Thailand’s largest conglomerate, the Charoen Pokphand (CP) Group on 24 October 2019 signed a USD 7.4 billion deal with the State Railway of Thailand (SRT) to build a high-speed railway connecting U-Tapao and Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi and Don Muang international airports.
(Sources: Business Times; BNN Bloomberg )