Companies are being invited to submit expressions of interest to win a ground-handling licence for Saudi Arabia’s major airports.

The General Authority of Civil Aviation (GACA) has set a deadline of 25 February for bids to be submitted.

The licence is the second of its kind to be granted. The license will cover Saudi’s three international airports, King Abdulaziz International in Jeddah, Kind Khalid International airport in Riyadh, King Fahad International in Dammam, with an option to use the licence in the kingdom’s domestic airports.

The tendering of the licence is a further sign of the liberalisation of Saudi’s aviation sector. The country’s airports have often been criticised for having high costs, due to the monopolies that have controlled ground-handling, catering and other support services.