Ethiopia Airlines is set to build a new KSh 500 billion airport later in 2020, its chief executive officer Tewolde Gebremariam has said.
The airline’s latest announcement comes after the rapidly-expanding carrier outgrew its capacity at its current base in the country’s capital Addis Ababa.
Ethiopian Airlines is set to build a new KSh 500B airport as passenger numbers soar. Photo: Ethiopian Airlines.
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According to a report by SABC News on Thursday, January 16, the airport will be built in Bishoftu, 39 km south east of the capital. “Bole Airport is not going to accommodate us; we have a beautiful expansion project. The airport looks very beautiful and very large but with the way that we are growing, in about three or four years we are going to be full,” Tewolde said. The airport will have the capacity to handle 100 million passengers annually five times more than Bole International Airport in Addis Ababa which has an estimated passenger capacity of 19 million.
Its construction will begin in the next six months.
Ethiopia’s flag carrier is fully state-owned and has 16 aircraft in its fleet.
Its profits soared to KSh 26.2 billion shillings in the 2018/19 financial year as its competitors such as Kenya Airways posted losses.
KQ, the once known pride of Africa, has experienced difficult times over the last decade and recently asked the government for more funds to help turn around its fortunes.
In 2018, the company’s loss stood at KSh 7.59 billion up from KSh 6.4 billion recorded in 2017.