NACO wins airport consultancy

17 February 2006

The Netherlands' NACO has been appointed by the Executive Privatisation Commission (EPC) to carry out technical consultancy services on the estimated $500 million expansion and rehabilitation of passenger terminals at Queen Alia International Airport (QAIA).

NACO will provide technical, market and financial analysis looking at passenger numbers, aircraft and cargo volumes. An unidentified US firm has been appointed to provide legal advice to the EPC, while the International Finance Corporation (IFC), the private sector arm of the World Bank, will act as lead adviser in attracting private sector participation in the airport's expansion and rehabilitation. 'The IFC is expected to produce a financial model on the planned privatisation within two months,' says a senior Transport Ministry official. 'As part of the estimated $500 million project, the existing terminal will be upgraded and a new one is expected to be built over a 90,000-square-metre [plot of land],' says the official. 'The contract is expected to be let on a build-own-transfer [BOT] or build-own-operate-transfer [BOOT] basis.'

Amman is also pressing ahead with plans to privatise the kingdom's airports. A team of National Aviation Services and PWC Logistics, both of Kuwait, was awarded in early January the 10-year contract to equip and operate the cargo terminal at King Hussain International Airport (KHIA) in Aqaba; Aqaba Development Corporation (ADC) is negotiating with state-owned carrier Royal Jordanian (RJ) to supply ground and passenger handling services at KHIA; and a new company to operate the airport is planned, with the former head of the Civil Aviation Authority, Hanna Najjar, expected to be appointed as chief executive officer (MEED 13:1:06).

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