3,000,000 pas­sen­gers bid by 2025

South Wales Echo - - NEWS -

CARDIFF Air­port’s chair­man be­lieves it could reach three mil­lion pas­sen­gers by 2025 and see a new £100m ter­mi­nal at the same time.

Roger Lewis said: ”I am pas­sion­ate and very am­bi­tious for the air­port and want us to achieve the next hur­dle of two mil­lion pas­sen­gers a year as quickly as pos­si­ble and then head to­wards three mil­lion pas­sen­gers.

“There is a view that we will achieve three mil­lion pas­sen­gers by 2027. How­ever, that for me is too late and I am a man in a hurry. And my view is that get­ting there by 2025 is achiev­able.”

The Welsh Gov­ern­ment-owned air­port has seen its pas­sen­ger num­bers grow steadily over the last few years to cur­rently stand at just over 1.4m.

Reach­ing three mil­lion pas­sen­gers would be de­pen­dent on at­tract­ing new air­lines and ex­ist­ing op­er­a­tors ex­pand­ing their routes, as well as favourable eco­nomic con­di­tions as the UK leaves the EU.

But hav­ing air pas­sen­ger duty de­volved to the Welsh Gov­ern­ment for the pur­pose of abol­ish­ing the tax would pro­vide a huge stim­u­lus for even greater air­line in­vest­ment at the Rhoose-based air­port.

This year pas­sen­ger growth is ex­pected to be around 6% with healthy growth ex­pected for 2018 and 2019.

Next May will see the launch of the first sched­uled di­rect long-haul route for Wales and the south west of Eng­land to the Gulf, with Qatar Air­ways’ daily ser­vice to Doha.

The route to Ha­mad In­ter­na­tional Air­port is set to gen­er­ate more than 100,000 ex­tra pas­sen­gers a year.

Con­sul­tancy Arup, through its Cardiff of­fice, has been ap­pointed to draw up a long-term mas­ter­plan for the air­port, in­clud­ing a new ter­mi­nal build­ing. The cur­rent ter­mi­nal will reach ca­pac­ity when pas­sen­gers reach three mil­lion.

Arup will look at the fund­ing costs for a ter­mi­nal and its lo­ca­tion, although it is ex­pected to be near the ex­ist­ing fa­cil­ity.

Although too early to give any clear in­di­ca­tion of cost, it’s es­ti­mated could be in the re­gion of £100m.

Mr Lewis said: “The costs will be sig­nif­i­cant, but not pro­hib­i­tive. So we have to think big and have a vi­sion in Wales and that has to start now. That is why we’re work­ing on long-term projects for the air­port and we are con­fi­dent that we can de­liver.”

He said a new ter­mi­nal would need se­cure pri­vate sec­tor part­ner in­vestors, it but only those tak­ing a long-term view on a re­turn on in­vest­ment.

Mr Lewis said a new ter­mi­nal could be de­liv­ered to co­in­cide with reach­ing three mil­lion pas­sen­gers at his stated tar­get of 2025 – when he said he will no longer be chair­man.

The air­port’s high­est ever pas­sen­ger num­ber was achieved in 2007, when un­der the own­er­ship of TBI, at 2.3 mil­lion.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.