Myanmar Opens Airports To Investors

Three Myanmar’s local airlines have expressed interest in running some of the country’s small airports according to an Eleven News report.


Air Bagan deputy director, Ma Grace, was quoted as saying that the airline was interested in investing in local airports.

“We also have asked to see the registry of interest (ROI). We haven’t yet decided on which airport to focus on.”

In addition, Air KBZ general manager Myat Thu said his airline had submitted a proposal to operate Heho airport.

Meanwhile, Asian Wings executive director Lwin Moe said his airline had not yet submitted a proposal to the government to operate local airports.

“We are watching the business, to see whether it can bring us financial benefits in the future.”

The airports that have been designated for private sector management are: Began-Nyaung Oo; Heho; Dawei; Putao; Monghsat; Kawthoung; Myikyina; Pathein; Myeik; Banmaw; Lashio; Bokpyin; Kalay; Magway; Mawlamyaing; Kani; Pakokku; Hpa-an; Homalin; Kyaukhtu; Ahnesakhan; Loikaw; Ann; Co Co Island; Monywa; Sittwe; Thandwe; Tachilek; Kengtung; and Kyaukpyu.

None of them are profitable and it would take considerable investment to bring them up to the standard of airports in Yangon and Mandalay. They will not be allowed upgrade to international gateways.

However, the airport at Tachilek would be an interesting prospect because it is very close to the Thai border at Mae Sai and could become an important airport even competing with MaeFahLuangInternationalAirport in Chiang Rai if it was allowed to handle international traffic.

But even with just domestic flight status, its position geographically will make it a popular starting point for trips to other towns in Myanmar.

Foreign investment at all the airports listed will be limited by the foreign investment law, according to the Department of Civil Aviation.

Last year, 27 domestic airports received 3,836,201 visitors increasing from over 3.5 million visitors in 2012 and just over 3 million visitors in 2011.

Myanmar Airways, Air Mandalay, Air KBZ, Golden Myanmar Airline, Yangon Airways, Air Bagan and Asia Wings are the seven domestic airlines that fly to 27 destinations across Myanmar.

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