Ariadne Airport Group, a joint venture (JV) between Greek firm GEK Terna and India-based GMR Airports, and Greek Transport Minister Christos Spirtzis have signed a concession contract to build Kasteli International Airport.

The contract will see the Greek-Indian consortium construct the new airport on the Greek island of Crete with an investment of approximately €850m.

Of the €850m investment, the consortium will invest more than €500m in the project, which is also financially supported by a state grant and equity.

Under the 35-year concession, the consortium will be responsible for the design, construction, financing, operation, and management of the new international airport.

“The contract will see the Greek-Indian consortium construct the new airport on the Greek island of Crete.”

The scope of work also includes key infrastructure projects such as the completion of the north road axis, as well as networks of peripheral roadways.

The airport is scheduled to become operational by 2024-25.

Construction of the airport is expected to be completed over the next five years.

The project will create 1,500 jobs during the construction period and nearly 7,500 direct jobs after completion, according to a study by the Air Transport Action Group (ATAG).

GMR Infra said that the project will be funded through a combination of equity, accruals from the existing airport, and a financial grant from the Government of Greece.

Once operational, Kasteli Airport is expected to handle more than seven million travellers per annum. The new airport will replace the existing Nikos Kazantzakis facility.