Construction work on Abu Dhabi’s midfield terminal complex is now expected to be completed by the end of 2017, several months behind its original target of July that year.

“This means we will have a best-in-class facility going into 2018…. Apart from the duty free, restaurants and lounge experience it will offer, the terminal will provide the most important factor for any aviation company, which is the convenience of seamless connectivity,” James Hogan, president and CEO of Abu Dhabi flag carrier Etihad Airways, told the Abu Dhabi Air Expo held on 8-10 March.

Some 23 million passengers are understood to have passed through the Abu Dhabi airport’s three existing terminals in 2015, marking a 17 per cent increase on the previous year.

The number of passengers that passed through the airport has exceeded its design capacity – about 17.5 million.

Upon completion, the midfield terminal complex is expected to nearly triple Abu Dhabi airport’s annual passenger-handling capacity to 55 million.

“The Midfield Terminal is the final part of an aviation jigsaw that would give us a world-class facility,” said Hogan.