Boost for airport

LIMPOPO's Gateway International Airport is set fort a major facelift that will elevate it to international standards.

LIMPOPO's Gateway International Airport is set fort a major facelift that will elevate it to international standards.

The Limpopo department of roads and transport said it had acquired the necessary funding to develop the airport to international standards.

The airport's Ntau Letebele said a lack of development at the airport was hampering trade and tourism in the province.

The Limpopo government plans to spend R12million to improve the airport's firefighting facility. Letebele said the airport authority would receive firefighting graders from the United States on Thursday.

This would lead to the Gateway being improved from a Grade 7 to Grade 9 in terms of airport standards.

"This will give us a chance to improve operations at the airport. We are convinced that there is an opportunity for trade in the province to grow. Developing our airport will help this growth," Letebele said.

Once all the developments have been completed the Gateway planned to recruit more airlines to use the facility. SA AirLink is currently the only carrier that uses the airport.

These latest developments will come as great news to frequent fliers since the introduction of more carriers would mean competition and a varied choice of carriers.

"We want to build the airport to generate revenue for the province," he said. "Also, we want to attract other airlines. There is potential for expansion of the airport. This will definitely promote trade and tourism.

"The airport was operating below capacity. That is why we will be looking at getting more carriers to use the airport," he said.

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