The government signed a 50 million Euro (about 110bn/-) loan facility with the European Investment Bank (EIB) on Friday to upgrade regional airports with the views of boosting tourism through efficient air transport.The facility will finance the upgrading of Kigoma, Tabora, Bukoba, Shinyanga and Sumbawanga airports.
Precision Air Services Chief Executive Officer Alphonce Kioko said in Dar e Salaam over the weekend that the loan will help cut down frequent maintenance costs that airlines incur on aircrafts due to poor airports."Having better airports is critical for the aviation industry to provide effective and efficient air services that are very instrumental to blossoming businesses," said Mr Kioko.
With improved airports, other players would be attracted, leading to stiffened competitions that will ultimately guarantee good aviation services to customers.Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Finance and Economic Affairs Ramadham Khijjah said the project would open up and ease transport to and from the regions, adding that the project would provide access to cost-efficient air transport as more players would definitely enter the market.
The project covers replacement of runways and reconstruction of taxiways and passenger terminal buildings.Mr Khijjah described EIB as a key player in the country's infrastructure development, with previous loan of 134.5 million US dollars (over 215bn/-) for energy sector development in the country.