The new Luanda International Airport, under construction since 2004 by Chinese contractors on the outskirts of the Angolan capital, should only start operating in 2019, a two-year delay compared to the previous forecast, said the Minister of Transport.
Minister Augusto Tomás said at the end of a visit to the project by the new President of Angola, João Lourenço, that the cost of the construction of the airport, including access roads, already exceeds US$6 billion.
The new airport is under construction in the municipality of Icolo e Bengo, 30 kilometres from the capital, with its inauguration initially announced for the first half of 2017.
The Minister of Transport, justifying the delay based on financial difficulties, said that just over half of the work had so far been completed and the airport should start operating at the end of 2019.
The construction of the airport is the responsibility of the China International Fund (CIF), hired by the Angolan government for US$3.8 billion and the equipment was awarded to the China National Aero-Technology International Engineering Corporation for US$1.4 billion.
The consortium of China Hyway Group Limited was chosen in 2015 to build the rail access to the airport, costing US$255 million.
Additionally, the construction of the railroad branch line from the current Baía Station of the Luanda Railroad (CFL) to the new Luanda international airport (a total of 15 kilometres), will cost US$162.4 million and the access roads to the new airport will cost US$692.7 million, also involving Chinese companies.
The project is financed by the credit line opened by China for the reconstruction of Angola, after three decades of civil war. (macauhub)