Thailand expects 100m air passengers

Posted on April 26, 2013

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Thailand is expecting to handle almost a 100 million airline passengers within three years, a senior official with the national airport operator has said.

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Speaking at the ACI Conference in Phuket this week, Somchai Sawasdeepon, Senior Executive Vice President at Airports of Thailand (AoT), said he expects Thailand’s airports to handle a combined total of 99.6m passengers and 649,952 flights by 2015. That is sharply up on 2012’s total of 76.1m passengers and 499,494 flights.

Much of the expansion will be carried by two airports, Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi and Phuket International, Somchai added. The capital’s main hub will see passenger traffic grow by a third to 60m from last year’s 45m, while Phuket will double to 12.5m passengers in 2015, once expansion work is completed.

Somchai flagged a number of trends impacting airports in the region, including Southeast Asia’s open skies policies, technological innovation, the rise of low-cost carriers and government policies. He added however, that it is “not easy” to keep up with customer expectations, and that the tourism industry needed to work together to resolve issues such as route development, news destinations and the environment.

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Posted in: Bangkok, Phuket, Thailand