The Rwandan government has inked a deal to build a new $818m airport.
An agreement has been signed with Portugese firm Mota-Engil Africa to build Bugesera International Airport 23km south east of Kigali. A joint venture has been established in which the company has a 75% stake.
The airport will have an initial capacity of 1.7m passengers per year under a $418m first phase, which “will expand subsequently upon traffic milestones being reached”, said Mota-Engil.
“The construction contract, which is to be performed 100% by Mota-Engil Africa, is a fast-track construction contract, expected to be concluded in December 2018.”
Mota-Engil said a second phase costing $400m would raise capacity to 4.5m passengers, though it gave no timetable for when it would begin, according to Reuters.
Under the deal Mota-Engil will finance, build, operate and maintain the airport for 25 years, with the option of a 15-year extension.
The company said: “The project is part of an ambitious investment programme of the Rwanda government to establish Kigali as a tourist and business conference destination, as well as the hub for Rwanda Air.
“This investment comes as an extension of the acquisition by Rwanda Air of new airplanes and its aggressive growth plans, to be a leader in the commercial airlines business in Africa.”
The Rwandan government first sought expressions of interest in a public private partnership to build and operate the airport in 2011.
The new airport will complement Kigali’s existing international airport, which is running at full capacity.