Private companies who finance expansion projects at Saudi airports will not be reimbursed by the government, but by travelers using the terminals, a Saudi aviation official announced last week.
Prince Fahed Bin Abdullah, head of Civil Aviation in Saudi Arabia said the new system would be tested at King Abdul Aziz Airport in Jeddah. Abdullah said officials expect the new terminals to help the airport accommodate 12 million travelers annually, now that the kingdom has decided to allow pilgrims access to the holy cities throughout the year. During the Haj, or pilgrimage, some one billion pilgrims passed through The King Abdul Aziz Airport, Abdullah said.
Abdullah told Saudi newspapers on last Thursday that aviation officials would allow the financers to operate commercial shops in new areas and proceed would be deposited in a fund used to repay the money. The additions at King Abdul Aziz Airport include bridges and 32 mobile gates that connect to the airplane. Parking and land waiting areas for both local and international travelers will be modernized and made more comfortable for traveler, Abdullah said.
The method has been used in parts of the world, but it is the first time it is done in Saudi Arabia.
Abdullah said the plan would lift the burden of maintenance and operation cost off the main state
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