NARITA, Chiba Pref. – The operator of Narita airport may build a terminal that exclusively serves low-cost carriers to spur flights in the growing market, airport officials said Wednesday.
Narita International Airport Corp. has been assessing demand for such a terminal, which could be used at rates lower than those for the existing terminals at the country’s main overseas gateway. It plans to see what executives of low-cost carriers have to say at a conference in London in September, officials said.
“About 10 LCCs from such countries as China, South Korea and Malaysia have requested that they serve Narita, and it’s desirable to realize their requests,” said an official of the transport ministry’s Civil Aviation Bureau. “We will wait and see what the airport operator has to say about whether or not there is the need for a new terminal.”
The airport operator is considering the maintenance area near the south end of the airport’s main 4,000-meter runway as a candidate site, with plans to convert the roughly 10,000-sq.-meter cargo facilities in the area, which are not currently in use, into a terminal for low-cost carriers.
Jetstar Airways, an Australia-based low-cost carrier, has so far been using Narita’s second terminal. The operator is also considering accepting other similar carriers at existing terminals for the time being.
“We must make sure that there is sufficient demand to avoid a situation where no airlines would use the facilities after we built them,” one airport official said.
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