China to build 70 new airports by 2015

13 June 2012 (Last Updated June 13th, 2012 04:35)

China is considering plans to build 70 new airports, increasing the country's total to more than 230 by 2015.

China is considering plans to build 70 new airports, increasing the country's total to more than 230 by 2015.

Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC) chief Li Jiaxiang said: "China plans to build 70 new airports in the next few years and to expand 100 existing airports."

As well as increasing the number of destinations by 44%, plans also include renovating existing airports to serve an estimated 450 million passengers by 2015.

It has been predicted that around 700 million Chinese residents will travel by air in 2020, while the number of passenger planes is expected to reach 2,700 by the end of 2015, up from 1,764 in 2011.

According to China's current five-year economic plan, air carriers in the country are expected to purchase more than 300 planes a year between 2011 and 2015.

CAAC also revealed that the country's civil aviation industry is lacking in infrastructure and capacity, while major airports are operating at full capacity.

CAAC reported a 21.2% rise in revenue to CNY500.1bn ($79bn) in 2011, when compared to 2010, as well as a 13.9% decline in profits to 36.3bn ($5.69bn), which could be attributed to a decline in passenger traffic and rise in jet fuel charges.