Tuesday, 26 October, 2021

Cox’s Bazar Airport: A new hope

Cox’s Bazar Airport: A new hope

Bangladesh, under the prudent leadership of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, has been grabbing every opportunity to materialise Bangabandhu's dream of ‘Sonar Bangla’. Infrastructural developments are now widespread to facilitate economic progress in every corner of the country. With the same intention, the government is implementing several projects in Cox's Bazar under a mega plan initiated to develop the area just like Singapore or Hong Kong. The plan aims to change the landscape of the district to make it a hub for tourism, trade and connectivity. Among others, one of the most significant projects is the runway extension of Cox's Bazar Airport that has been in operation since 1956 as a domestic airport. Prime Minister yesterday inaugurated the construction work on upgrading the airport into an international one to turn the long natural sandy beach into an international tourist destination and make Bangladesh an aviation hub.

Inspired by Hong Kong International Airport, the Bangladesh government has undertaken the Cox's Bazar airport runway expansion project by reclaiming coastal land, called maritime runway, the first of its kind in Bangladesh. The project includes the installation of an airfield ground lighting system, an instrument landing system, a safety wall, and a bridge over the River Bakkhali. As per the design, its runway will stick right out into the blue sea waters, making a flight take-off even more exciting.

Once completed, the new 10,700-foot runway will allow larger and wide-bodied aircraft like Boeing 777-300ER, Boeing 747-400 to use the airport, paving the way for the smooth operation of international flights in our tourism town. The airport is expected to offer foreign holidaymakers hassle-free trips to the world's longest unbroken sea beach.

It is learnt that many European and African countries are approaching Bangladesh to establish aviation connectivity because of its location, fast economic progress and aviation prospects. On the other hand, investors now want their movement inside Bangladesh smoother than in the past. Therefore, establishing airports of international standard is the need of the hour; the government has rightly decided to upgrade all the eight operational airports across Bangladesh. We expect smooth and speedy completion of these projects, which will speed up the economic development in return.