KATHMANDU, Nov 20: The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has approved a $150 million (approximately Rs 17.85 billion) concessional loan to improve the capacity of Tribhuvan International Airport (TIA) and Gautam Buddha Airport (GBA) in Nepal.
Issuing a statement on Friday, the ADB said that the loan will support the construction of a parallel taxiway extension and hangar aprons at TIA, and a new international terminal building at GBA to increase capacity.
Another key component of the project is minimizing climate change impacts by using clean energy materials, such as the solar panels and energy-efficient lighting to be installed at the new GBA terminal building, according to the statement.
TIA is Nepal’s only international airport and a major hub for domestic air transport while the GBA in Lumbini will serve as an alternate international air transport facility in the country.
“ADB’s support will improve TIA’s safety, capacity, and operational efficiency. In addition, the new GBA international terminal will play a key role in boosting regional tourism in and around Lumbini,” the statement quoted ADB Senior Transport Specialist for South Asia, Kai Wei Yeo, as saying. “The project will help revive the country’s tourism industry and address the long-term negative effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.”