25 Feb 2019

Upgrade of Vanuatu airport nears completion

From , 5:05 am on 25 February 2019

Three years after airlines abruptly pulled their services, a rebuild of the runway at Vanuatu's main international airport is nearly finished.

In January 2016, Air New Zealand, Qantas and Virgin stopped flying to Port Vila over concerns about the runway.

That led to a multi-million dollar World Bank package to rebuild the runway, which is on track for completion within months.

The chief executive of Airports Vanuatu, Jason Rakau, says the upgrade will help improve its service, capacity and navigation, and allow flights from further afield.

He told Jamie Tahana it's been a long time coming.

Air Vanuatu ATR 42 aircraft (now retired) at Bauerfield International Airport, Port Vila.

Air Vanuatu ATR 42 aircraft (now retired) at Bauerfield International Airport, Port Vila. Photo: Wikipedia

The World Bank funding included money for upgrades to airports in Santo and Tanna, and Jason Rakau says work on these is progressing well.