The Prime Minister has approved a plan to upgrade Cat Bi International Airport in the northern port city of Hai Phong to receive Boeing B747, Boeing B777 and Airbus A321 aircraft.

Under the 5 trillion VND (240 million USD) plan which was announced on October 7, the international terminal will act as a standby for Noi Bai International Airport and also as an airfield for both civilian and military purposes.

By 2015, it will become a 4E level international airport under regulations from the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO).

By that time, total volume of passengers will reach 2 million per year, along with 20,000 tonnes of cargo.

By 2025, annual passenger numbers are expected to hit 8 million, with 250 tonnes of cargo.

According to the plan, in the period up to 2015, a two-storey passenger terminal with the capacity to serve from 4 to 5 million passengers per year will be built, and land for upgrading the capacity to serve from 7 to 8 million passengers per year will be prepared.

After the new terminal is put into operation, the old one will become a low-cost carrier or cargo terminal, or be used for other purposes.

A business and service zone is also planned covering an area of about 4,000 sq. m., with room to expand to 12,000 sq. m. based on actual demand.

Currently, Cat Bi Airport services five Ho Chi Minh City-Hai Phong flights and one Da Nang-Hai Phong flight everyday.-VNA