By THOMAS KEAN | FRONTIER
YANGON — The government’s plans for a US$1.5 billion airport at Bago have hit another hurdle, with a member of the consortium picked to build the project revealing that a key agreement has expired.
Singapore-listed Yongnam Holdings said in an announcement that the framework agreement signed between the Department of Civil Aviation and the consortium had expired and not yet been renewed “as certain issues remain unresolved”.
The agreements concerns the “design, construction and management of Hanthawaddy International Airport on the basis of a public-private partnership”, the announcement said.
The framework agreement was signed on January 30, 2016. It is unclear when it expired. At the time officials aid the signing of the framework agreement had cleared the way for the government to apply for a soft loan from Japan to cover part of the project’s cost.
The delay is just the latest to hit the project, which had an initial planned completion date of 2016. However, the Japan-Singapore bid was selected in October 2014 after negotiations collapsed with the South Korean consortium that won the initial tender the previous August.
The Hanthawaddy airport site covers about 9,000 acres near Bago, around 80 kilometres northeast of downtown Yangon.
The consortium also includes Japan’s JGC Corporation, which holds a 55 percent stake, and Changi Airports International of Singapore, which has a 20 percent share.
Read more about Hanthawaddy International Airport in our February 2017 feature.