China to help Nepal develop Pokhara airport

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Pokhara
Pokhara lies in the Himalayan foothills

A Chinese construction company is planning to sign a deal with Nepal’s government for the development of a new airport in the tourist city of Pokhara.

China’s Xinhua news agency reported on Friday that the Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal (CAAN) will soon agree a commercial contract with China CAMC Engineering Co for the creation of Pokhara Regional International Airport (PRIA).

China CAMC has estimated that the development will cost a total of US$305m, while the Export-Import Bank of China has also agreed a loan the project US$145m.

While no timeline was given for the completion of the project, PRIA is expected to have a capacity of one million passengers per year. Nepal’s government is reported to have acquired more than 70 hectares of land for the project.

The second largest city in Nepal, Pokhara lies in the Himalayan foothills and is a popular base for tourists and trekkers. It is currently served by a small airport offering mainly domestic services to destinations like Kathmandu and Jomsom.

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