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There is a plan to build a new international airport in Bali, Indonesia as tourist arrivals to the island province continue to expand.

Bali Governor Wayan Koster promised to build a new international airport in the village of Kubutambahan in the district of Buleleng, northern Bali, to facilitate the transport of tourists to the island, reported state-run Antara News.

“I have met three times with the Transport Minister Budi Karya Sumadi to discuss the plan. We have the same perception about the importance of building a new airport in Bali,” the new governor, officially installed only last week, said recently.

He said the Ngurah Rai International Airport of Denpasar will no longer be able to accommodate the growing number of arrivals of aircraft and tourists in the next five years.

The Ngurah Rai airport, the main airport in Bali, is the second busiest in the country after Soekarno-Hatta International Airport. With about 12% to 15% growth in passengers annually, Ngurah Rai airport reached 20 million passenger arrivals yearly in 2017, which is its current full capacity.

Wayan added that there had been a plan to build a new runway at Ngurah Rai airport through reclamation of the sea, but the cost, to reach about IDR25 trillion (US$1.7 billion), is too high. Moreover, the risk is great. Reportedly, lengthening the existing runway is not possible due to the densely populated areas adjacent to the airport, and to environmental concerns regarding reclamation.

Therefore, it was decided to build one in Kubutambahan that would have a lower cost but a larger capacity, he said.

“With a budget of Rp25 trillion we could build a much bigger international airport in Buleleng,” he continued.

Wayan said the location of the airport project in Kubutambahan would be decided this month. A feasibility study on the project is ongoing and construction will start immediately once the study has been completed.

Photo: BxHxTxCx 

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