Agreement on funding for Tamale Airport works signed
The Ghana Airports Company Limited, managers of the nation's airports, has signed a $100-million commercial agreement with Queiroz Galvao, a Brazilian construction company, for the upgrading and expansion of the Tamale Airport to international standards.
The Managing Director of the Ghana Airports Company Limited, Mrs Doreen Owusu-Fianko, signed for the company, while the Managing Director of Queiroz Galvao, Mr Marcos Alexandre Silva, initialled for his outfit at a short ceremony in Accra.
The first phase of the renovation will involve the construction of structures and the rebuilding of the runway from the current 2,500 metres to 4,500 metres to accommodate any aircraft from any part of the world.
Already, Parliament has given its assent to the loan and the project is expected to be completed within 18 months.
Giving the background to the project, the Minister of Transport, Mrs Dzifa Attivor, said it was part of the government's efforts at expanding opportunities in every part of the country and also to ensure that Ghana positioned itself as the gateway to the West African sub-region.
She said apart from serving Ghanaians in the northern part of the country, the new Tamale International Airport would also provide services for other sub-Saharan regions, including Burkina Faso and Mali.
She said when the Brazilian company arrived in Ghana after a business tour of Brazil by President John Mahama, it expressed interest elsewhere but she pleaded with the company to deal with Tamale.
Mrs Owusu-Fianko explained that because Ghana had only one international airport the Kotoka International Airport anytime there was a problem, all flights had to be directed to either Nigeria or Cote d'Ivoire.
She added that the airport would serve those travelling to Mecca and also aid the Savanna Accelerated Development Authority in the export of perishable goods, especially fruits and vegetables to Europe.
She said Tamale would also derive the benefits of being an aeropolis where skyscrapers would be built, coupled with other profits that came with the establishment of an international airport.
By Donald Ato Dapatem/Daily Graphic/Ghana