Times of Oman
Top officials inspect new Muscat international airport as opening a step closer
November 14, 2017 | 9:30 PM
by Gautam Viswanathan, gautam@timesofoman.com
Photo - @motc_om
 
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Muscat: Senior government officials paid a visit to the new Muscat International Airport, as the Sultanate’s transport hub prepares for its grand opening.

Gen Sultan bin Mohammed Al Nu’amani Minister of Royal Office, as well as the Head of Communications and Coordination for the Royal Office, was briefed on the facilities at the new airport.

He was accompanied by Dr. Ahmed bin Mohammed bin Salim Al Futaisi, Minister of Transport and Communications, and Mohammed Al Zaabi, CEO of the Public Authority for Civil Aviation (PACA), and several senior figures from the Royal Office.

Tests to finalise the feasibility and readiness of the airport are now nearing completion.



The latest among these tests were the Operational Readiness and Airport Transfer (ORAT) operations, which took place in the presence of International Air Transport Association (IATA) officials. “The size and complexity of today’s major airports and their systems make this kind of methodical preparation necessary,” said Katherine Kaczynska of the IATA, at that time. “An ORAT process can take anywhere between three months and a year to complete.

It requires significant time and effort but is an absolutely vital step to ensure a flawless opening for any major airport project.

“It is the best way to ensure that everything functions as designed from day one,” she added.“Opening an airport facility is a complex endeavour, therefore, methodical preparation is necessary before an airport can start operations.”

According to Oman Airports Management Company, the new terminal at the airport will be able to handle about 12 million passengers per annum, with that number increasing to 24, 36, and 48 million as more terminals are added.

Spanning a total of 580,000 square metres, the airport will have 86 check-in counters, 20 self-service check-in kiosks, 12 flight transfer desks, 31 departure counters, 56 arrival counters, 10 baggage carousels and a 90-room airport hotel, all of which have been designed to improve passenger comfort and convenience.

In addition to these, the airport car park can accommodate up to 8,000 vehicles, features 10 bus terminals and has an in-flight catering capacity of 24,000 meals a day.

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