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Fri 6 Mar 2009 04:54 PM

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Bahrain airport handled 8.7m passengers in 2008

Oil archipelago's year-on-year passengers rise 20% in 2008.

The Bahrain International Airport handled 8.7 million passengers last year, up by 20 percent from 2007, according to local newspaper Gulf Daily News.

The oil exporter’s Civil Aviation Affairs (CAA) assistant under-secretary for aviation services Ahmed Nemat Ali expects another 10 percent growth in 2009.

"The airport has been witnessing a steady growth in traffic over the years”, he said.

Ali was speaking on the sidelines of a ceremony at the airport to welcome the inaugural flight of Wataniya Airways, from Kuwait.

Earlier, Wataniya Airways, Kuwait's first luxury airline, announced on Thursday the start of daily scheduled flights to BahrainInternational Airport - its third route launch in a week.

"Thirty-eight international airlines now operate scheduled services through Bahrain to more than 50 international destinations," Ali infomed. He said CAA was negotiating with two more international airlines, which have shown interest to operate to Bahrain, according to the daily.

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