Quang Ninh international airport to open by 2017 hinh anh 1Illustrative image (Photo: vietnamnet.vn)

Hanoi (VNA) - The Quang Ninh International Airport will open and welcome its first flight by the end of 2017, authorities in the northern province of Quang Ninh said.

Nguyen Van Thanh, Deputy Chairman of the provincial People's Committee, made the announcement at a meeting with the Ministry of Transport, held in Hanoi earlier this week.

The project has been delayed for nearly a year due to a longer than expected feasibility study process.

Thanh said Quang Ninh had finished the necessary preparations to allow the airport to open on schedule.

"We are still completing the infrastructure connecting the city to the airport," he added.

The Ha Long-Van Don road has received land clearance approval and will connect with the Ha Long-Hai Phong highway by the beginning of 2018.

In addition, the province has invested in the construction of a connecting road from the centre of Van Don to the airport.

The deputy chairman also said they had approved the feasibility report, chosen an investor and granted an investment licence for the project.

Moreover, the province has assigned the Department of Transport to supervise the project's execution under the Build-Operate-Transfer model.

More than 252ha of the total 284ha has received land clearance approval for the construction of the airport. The remaining area is expected to receive this approval later this month.

Deputy minister of Transport Nguyen Nhat said Singapore CPG Consultants Pte Ltd would review the project's feasibility study in terms of finance, flight management and exploration initiatives. The reviewed information must be submitted to the project's steering board on March 20.

Nhat also asked the province to hand over control of the cleared land to investors as soon as possible.

With a total investment of nearly 7.5 trillion VND (331.7 million USD) for the first phase of construction, Quang Ninh airport will be built on Van Don island, some 50km from Ha Long bay.

It will cover an area of some 290ha, with one runway, one terminal and parking spots for four medium to large aircraft.

It could serve up to two million passengers per year when it goes into operation and is expected to be expanded after 2020 to serve up to five million passengers per year.

A group of Korean investors, including Korea Airports Corporation and POSCO Engineering and Construction, was originally assigned to build the airport under a BOT arrangement.

After the group made an exit early last year, real estate conglomerate Sun Group reportedly took over the project.-VNA