November 2021 Marks Start of Works for Construction of Vlora International Airport

The works for the construction of the international airport of Vlora, which will be the largest in Albania and is situated in the southern part of the country, start within November this year, according to the Minister of Infrastructure and Energy, Belinda Balluku.

This airport is designed to accommodate all flights from anywhere in the world and transatlantic ones, which to date have not been offered due to the unsuitable runway at Rinas Airport in Tirana.

The Minister, Balluku informed the Parliament as she unveiled the main projects that will be implemented during the next 4 years of the government "Rama 3" that the Vlora airport will be built within 36 months.

Unlike the Mother Teresa International Airport, it will also provide opportunities for cargo flights and special aircraft maintenance hangars, another important sector of the aviation industry.

According to the initial project data, the airport will cover an area of 297 hectares. Of these 16,000 m2 will be the area of the passenger terminal. Aircraft parking will be 46,690 m2 of which 32,000 m2 will be for aircraft positions (12 stops). 2000 m2 will be the area of the fire service.

The runway will be 3200 meters long, while the airport category will be 4E, which means that it meets the conditions for large aircraft. The connecting roads will be a total of 7263 meters of the category that supports runway operations.

Vlora International Airport will be built by a consortium of companies, where 50 percent of the shares are owned by Mabetex of entrepreneur Behgjet Pacolli. Mabetex is in partnership with another Turkish company, Yda Group, which has experience in construction and operations at least in three airports in Turkey, one in Kazakhstan and another in Ukraine. Yda Group has 48 percent of the shares in the consortium that won the right for Vlora airport, while 2 percent belong to the company from Kosovo 2A Group Shpk. The estimated value of the investment is almost 104 million euros.

Currently the International Airport of Tirana "Mother Teresa" and that of Kukes "Flatrat e Veriut" are functional in Albania. Minister Balluku said that the competition for Saranda airport will start and it is expected that it will be functional in 2025. / argumentum.al