China's Government will spend approximately USD4.54 billion (CNY30 billion) over the next five years on new airport projects in the far western region of Xinjiang (Reuters, 31-Jan-2011). The government will construct four new airports and expand or relocate six others. By 2015, Xinjiang will have 22 airports handling civil flights. The number of passengers using Xinjiang's airports are expected to almost double by 2015 compared with 2010, to approximately 20 million people.
China to spend USD4.6bn on Xinjiang Airports
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Havana Jose Marti International Airport: Exciting times and the opportunity to become a regional hub
As a result of the restoration of diplomatic relations between Cuba and the United States of America the US President Barack Obama visited Cuba in Mar-2016. In his speeches he placed heavy emphasis on youth, generational shift and the future (the main protagonist of the old guard, Fidel Castro, rejected Obama's visit and his words of reconciliation). This has whetted the appetite of airlines, airport operators, ATM providers and investors seeking opportunities there.
Indeed, and even though Cuba has long been receiving flights from many countries if not from the US (where only ‘special circumstances’ applied), it is possible to bracket these events with other similar outcomes in countries such as Iran and Myanmar. Suddenly, Cuba is ‘open for business’ in the eyes of the western world, but that might not quite be the case. There is a long way ahead and there is a lot to be done, with no guarantees.
This report, while dealing briefly with wider aviation and, indeed, economic issues arising out of the rapprochement, focuses on the country’s leading airport, Havana’s Jose Marti International - and how it stands to gain from these developments; particularly if it could become a regional hub.