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MARCH 2019

News Backgrounder

World airport body supports private infrastructure investment

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by CHIEF CORRESPONDENT, TOM BALLANTYNE  

March 1st 2019

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As leaders of the world’s airports prepare to gather in Hong Kong next month for the annual Airports Council International (ACI) World Annual General Assembly, the council’s director general, Angela Gittens, underscored the importance of investing in new and improved airport infrastructure to accommodate traffic growth and maintain the high levels of service passengers expect. Read More »

Addressing a “Build the Future” leadership conference, she said ACI Data forecasts global passenger traffic will exceed 20 billion by 2039 with a long-term Compounded Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) from 2017 to 2040 of 4.1%.

“Investing in new and improved infrastructure, as well as making the most of existing infrastructure, is the bedrock on which smooth airport operations and improved passenger experience is built. Catering to the changing needs of passengers will be pivotal to airports’ success in an increasingly globalized and competitive environment,” she said.

Gittens said airports face unprecedented challenges in securing essential financing for expansion. “At airports around the world, ACI has found private investment has provided a viable solution to global airport infrastructure gap, although it should be applied appropriately with specific regard to the local situation,” she said.

“Globally, airport privatization has become an important investment vehicle for the development of infrastructure to accommodate airline demand, contribute to community and national economic vitality and to enhance the customer passenger experience. It has been applied in important aviation markets including Europe, Australia, Brazil, China and India.”

The ACI’s Policy Brief, Creating Fertile Grounds for Private Investment in Airports, said airports with private sector participation account for an estimated 14% of airports worldwide. They handle more than 40% of global traffic and invest 44% of global capital expenditure to develop both the aeronautical and non-aeronautical sectors of the business.

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