Kazakhstan’s main aviation facility is set to double its capacity with a $200m investment
TAV Airports – a member of Groupe ADP – has taken over operations at Almaty, the busiest hub in Kazakhstan.
The Turkish firm is now an 85% beneficial owner of the base, alongside the associated fuel and catering businesses. Kazakhstan Infrastructure Fund, which is managed by market assets firm VPE Capital and supported by Kazyna Capital Management, is the holder of the other 15%.
This is the first site that TAV have ownership of out of its portfolio of 15 airports.
“Kazyna Capital Management’s mission is to promote sustainable economic development in the Republic of Kazakhstan, and this project does just that – at scale,” said Ainur Kuatova, chief executive officer of Kazyna Capital Management. “We’re proud to be part of this milestone project that brings in excess of $600M in foreign capital along with leading international expertise into a key infrastructure asset. For every dollar that KCM is investing, foreign partners are investing more than $20.”
Almaty is located at an important point along the ancient Silk Road, therefore acting as a strategical junction for the ‘One Belt One Road’ project which connects central China to West Asia, Europe and Africa.
Sani Sener, TAV president and CEO, believes the airport has “significant potential for growth”.
He said: “As part of the largest airport management group globally, we’ll be promoting Almaty and Kazakhstan as the business capital of the region, as a country with a rich cultural heritage and diverse tourism opportunities. Our expertise in route development will help to increase the connectivity of Almaty to the world. As an example, in Georgia we doubled the number of destinations and increased passenger traffic seven-fold in a decade.”
Central Asia’s busiest hub is also the leader in economic development, generating around 60% of the region’s GDP.
In 2019, the airport served 6.4 million passengers – a 13% increase compared with the previous year. Despite traffic drops throughout 2020 due to Covid-19, the base still made net profits.
With plans to double the facility’s capacity to 14 million customers annually, the investment is expected to be completed within the next three years.