Bangladesh is to invest $4m into improving security at four of its airports, including Shahjalal and Shah Amanat airports, to prevent gold smuggling.

The Executive Committee of the National Economic Council (ECNEC) meeting has given its approval for the project titled ‘Bangladesh Airports Safety and Security System Improvement’, which will be implemented by the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) by June 2017.

The decision comes in the wake of repeated haul of smuggled gold at the Dhaka and Chittagong airports over the past two years.

"The decision comes in the wake of repeated haul of smuggled gold at the Dhaka and Chittagong airports over the past two years."

The project will see the procurement of primary surveillance radar and secondary surveillance radar for the Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport in Dhaka and Hazrat Shah Amanat International Airport in Chittagong.

Apart from that, a security system to check all kinds of smuggling, including gold, will be installed at the Shahjalal International Airport. This project will see enhanced pedestrian access control systems, vehicle parking control systems, baggage X-ray scanning machines and CCTVs, in addition to explosives, archway and handheld metal detectors.

The cabinet meeting, which was presided over by prime minister Sheikh Hasina also stated that the infrastructure development cost for Shahjalal Airport had risen from BDT1.48bn ($2m) to BDT5.62bn ($7m).

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By GlobalData

The government had taken up the infrastructure development project to make the country’s main airport better equipped for handling Boeing 777, 747 and Airbus 330.

While BDT3.28bn ($4m) will be sponsored by Denmark, the remaining amount would be mobilised by the government.

This project is expected to be completed by July 2015.