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The planned airport will replace the existing domestic airport, whose expansion has been planned since 2008, but which has been put on hold. The chosen partner for the public-private partnership (PPP) project will operate and maintain the existing domestic airport until the completion of the new international airport.
The existing airport at Taif is located 30 km, to the east, of Taif and 70 km from Mecca. It was converted into a regional airport in 2009 when GACA allowed international airlines to operate at the airport as the city's population was increasing.
The World Bank's International Finance Corporation (IFC) has been appointed as lead adviser to assist in the structuring and implementation of the project.
Interested parties must submit their pre-qualification application for the Taif airport project on or before 8 July.
GACA's board approved the project on 7 May 2014. The new airport is part of the capacity building initiative in Mecca, which hosts the annual hajj pilgrimage and umrah, which can be performed at any time of year.
The new Taif International Airport will complement Mecca's King Abdulaziz International airport, which has been undergoing an US$8.2 billion expansion to eventually handle up to 80 million passengers a year.
Throughout the last month we have reported about several airports PPP projects globally: