Kabalega International Airport to become operational in October

The Kabalega International Airport is upon completion expected to boost the oil production activities in the Albertine region

The Kabalega International Airport is upon completion expected to boost the oil production activities in the Albertine region

HOIMA, UGANDA: The Kabalega International Airport (previously known as Kabaale International Airport) in Hoima District, western Uganda will start accommodating flights by October 2023, DailyExpress has learnt.

The massive $309 million project whose construction started in April 2018 is being undertaken by SBC (Uganda) Ltd in a Joint Venture with SBI International Holdings AG.

The airport consists of a 3.5-kilometre-long runway that is 45 meters wide with shoulders of 15 meters on each side.

The opening of the airport was planned for 2022, but now in an update to this publication, Mr Amos Muriisa, the Public Relations Officer of SBC Uganda says the work met several challenges, including the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“The runway is 99% complete, and construction of the required facilities for the first phase to support delivery and transportation of cargo and equipment for the development of the oil and gas facilities is underway,” Muriisa said.

“We have phase one and phase two. By October 2023, the airport will not be totally completed, but it will be in position to handle the flights,” he added.

“To be complete, we shall need 20 housing units for the airport operators, the air control tower, and a fuel farm or depot, but they are not as urgent as possible. They can come in the second phase. What is on the ground is what is required to have the airport start operating,” Muriisa emphasised.

He explained that the airport apron (parking area for planes) can host the four biggest cargo planes. It has two turn-pards on either side.

Kabalega Industrial Park, which sits on 29.5 square kilometres of land, will boast several facilities, including a refinery and other industries that will feed off the refinery, such as the agro-zone, which will have industries adding value to agricultural produce purposely for export and cold rooms.

The industrial park will be self-sustaining because it will have a power substation, water, schools, roads, a health centre and a technology campus, among others.

The Kabalega International Airport upon completion will be able to land the second-largest cargo aeroplane in the world in a bid to support the transportation of materials required for the region’s oil industry as well as tourism.

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