Bahrain Airport Company will take over the project in the coming weeks, and is currently recruiting private sector staff.

Meanwhile Civil Aviation Affairs (CAA) remains in charge of the project. The masterplan is currently awaiting approval by Crown Prince Sheikh Salman bin Hamad al-Khalifa (MEED 18:7:08).

The country’s national carrier, Gulf Air, is also in discussions with Bahrain Airport Company over the facilities it will be granted at the airport. The airline is seeking either a dedicated terminal or a separate section at the new site.

“BAC is drawing up plans for how the site will be used,” says a CAA official. “That will be decided between BAC and Gulf Air.”

The plan for the airport will raise capacity at Bahrain International to 15 million passengers a year from 10 million, and is scheduled for completion by 2011.