Myanmar to upgrade 3 local airports to receive Chinese tourists

Some local airports will be upgraded to international-standard airports as a part of a slew of projects under China’s Belt and Road (B&R) initiative, according to U Kyaw Win, Union Minister for Planning and Finance.

Backed by rising incomes, some 13 million Chinese are travelling abroad yearly but less than half a million came to Myanmar due to the lack of good connecting airports with international flight capacity, U Kyaw Win said during a meeting with the Vice President held yesterday at Republic of Myanmar Federation of Chamber of Commerce and Industries (UMFCCI) office.

“There are airports in Heho, Magwe and Pakokku that already have runways but lack the capacity to handle international aircraft. The Chinese want to visit Myanmar but we don’t have good airports to accommodate them. So, we will upgrade them to become international airports so that they are able to receive these tourists,” U Kyaw Win said.

The upgrading of the three airports will be part a slew of projects under B&R. “There will be many big projects in Myanmar under this corridor and anyone, including local entrepreneurs who want to invest will be invited and supported,” U Kyaw Win said.

“When these business opportunities come, local businessmen can submit proposals to participate. All interested persons are invited. We will support those who can do it but we will not interfere with management and operations,” he said.

Investments in any of the projects under B&R can be made either 100 percent or in partnership with China, U Kyaw Win added.

B&R has more than 60 participant countries including Myanmar. Last May, State Counselor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi signed a memorandum of understanding to cooperate under the initiative during her trip to Beijing.

Under the initiative, implementation of large-scale projects will be reported to the public, said U Kyaw Win.

Source: Myanmar Times

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