The Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal (CAAN) has announced that China's Northwest Civil Aviation Airport Construction Group has been awarded the contract for upgrading Nepal's Gautam Buddha Airport in Bhairahawa.
The renovated airport will become operational by the end of 2017.
The Rs6.22bn ($6m) deal was signed between CAAN director general Ratish Chandra Lal Suman and general manager of Northwest's overseas Department Zhou Zun.
The estimated cost of the project is approximately Rs6.30bn.
According to plans, the upgraded airport will have a 3,000m runway and will be capable of serving 760,000 passengers every year after the completion of the first phase of upgrade.
Apart from upgrading the existing runway, the Chinese firm will also reconstruct exits and parallel taxiways with flexible pavements, build a new international aircraft parking apron with rigid pavements, convert one runway into a parallel taxiway, create a drainage system parallel to the runway, taxiway and divert the Ghaghara Khola and airport boundary, reported ANI News.
China Harbour Engineering Company and a Nepali-Spanish joint venture Sanjose-Kalika were the second and third lowest bidders, quoting Rs6.40bn and Rs6.68bn, respectively.
The project will be financed by a loan and grant aid of $42.96m and $12.75m, respectively from the Asian Development Bank.
Established in May 1995, Northwest is a part of the Northwest Civil Aviation Authority, which is an independent legal entity involved in the construction of professional airport runway and airport construction of state-owned enterprises.
Image: Northwest from China has won a contract to upgrade Nepal's Gautam Buddha Airport. Photo: courtesy of Stuart Miles from freedigitalphotos.net.