Noi Bai Airport (Source: english.vietnamnet.vn)

Hanoi (VNA) – No plan for the Noi Bai International Airport expansion has yet been selected, Deputy Minister of Transport Nguyen Nhat said in a recent interview with Vietnam News Agency amidst public debate about the expansion, which is said to cost up to five billion USD.

According to Deputy Minister Nhat, proposals on expanding Noi Bai airport were made as part of the process to revise the master plan adopted in 2009 on the development of air transportation until 2020 with a vision to 2030, which is known as Plan 21/QD-TTg.

After seven year of implementation, the plan failed to keep pace with the real growth rate of the air transport sector, both in terms of the number of passengers and the volume of goods. Therefore, Deputy Prime Minister Hoang Trung Hai ordered the Ministry of Transport and the Civil Aviation Administration to make adjustments to the plan. The revised plan is to be submitted to the Prime Minister this month.

Deputy Minister Nhat noted that Plan 21/QD-TTg forecast the number of passengers through Noi Bai airport at 20 million by 2020, but the figure already reached 17.5 million in 2015.

Therefore, the MoT has put forward five or six potential plans for Noi Bai airport expansion for consideration, but as yet no plan has yet been selected.

Asked about the land required for expanding the airport, the official said following the approval of Plan 21, areas around the airport has been zoned off with a view to creating enough space to meeting future requirements.

The zoned off area will have to be increased relating to the expansion of the airport, the Deputy Minister said, noting that many issues will need to be considered in relation to this.

Other options such as building a new airport in another area will also be taken into consideration.-VNA