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Tue 31 Dec 2013 02:31 PM

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Oman airport expansion plans in limbo

Sultanate cancels tender to select contractor for Ras Al Hadd terminal building project

Oman airport expansion plans in limbo
Generic airplane, airport

Plans for a new terminal building at Ras Al Hadd airport in Oman are in limbo after the Sultanate cancelled the tender to select a contractor for the project, it was reported.

Bids for the project – one of five major airport redevelopments planned for the Sultanate - were to be opened on December 9.

However, contractors who purchased the tender documents have now been told by the Ministry of Transport and Communications that the tender had been cancelled, the Times of Oman reported.

It did not provide a reason for canning the already-delayed tender. It is also not known whether the ministry is considering another redesign of the terminal building, which is seen as a catalyst for developing tourism in the region.

The ministry is overseeing the development of three green-field regional airports and massive expansion of two international airports, the Times said.

The Times report said the ministry had earlier carried out a reappraisal of the terminal building packages of all three regional airports, with the review leading to an overhaul of the design of the terminal buildings.

Meanwhile, the tender opening date for selecting a contracting firm for a terminal building of Sohar Airport has been extended for a second time to January 13.

It is understood as many as 15 companies have shown interest in participating in the tender.

The three regional airports — Sohar, Al Duqm and Ras Al Hadd — will link regional areas with Muscat, and is part of a larger plan to meet increasing travel demand from tourists, business people and locals.

When operational, Sohar Airport will also serve as an alternative to Muscat International Airport. The facility will support the growth of cargo, courier and passenger traffic across northern Oman.

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