11 December 2008

Rwanda: Company Designing New Airport Revealed

Kigali — A British engineering company, TPS Consult, is working on a detailed design for a new airport development at the outskirts of Kigali in Bugesera District, Eastern Province.

This was confirmed yesterday by Linda Bihire, the Minister of Infrastructure.

According Bihire, the company's design remains a pre-requisite before the airport's actual construction works begins.

She told The New Times yesterday that government will invite private people to invest in the airport's construction as soon as its final design is availed in the next thirteen months.

"Government is encouraging investors to invest their money into this venture," she said.

The airport will, according to government, be constructed through Public Private Partnerships (PPPs)

MININFRA's Permanent Secretary, Vincent Gatwabuyege, said that the company's consultants started operations to work on the airport's design early this month.

"They have just started and we will just have to wait a few months [to see the progress of their work]," he said.

By its contract with government, TPS Consult is responsible to come up with a detailed design work for all the buildings and infrastructure.

It will also come up with details of operational items and equipment that will be required for a fully functional airport.

Gatwabuyege revealed that the company that will also design the plan to upgrade the Kigali international airport is expected to earn - 4,000,000 from the projects.

TPS's Technical Director, Hanif Macci, described the deal as of a 'high profile' and said his company would use its expertise in the design of airport facilities to carry out its work.

"This is a very high profile project within Rwanda which will attract a great deal of interest throughout the country," he is quoted in a statement. As building the country's airports apparently requires hundreds of millions of dollars, MININFRA officials say, activities to build them already seem to be calling for real fund raising.

"The construction work will depend on funds mobilisation," Gatwabuyege says.

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