Changi Airports to Continue Operating King Fahd

For the maximum permissible period of seven months from November 7, 2014, the extension of the contract will see Changi Airports International (CAI) continuing to work alongside GACA to strengthen the position of KFIA in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

Following a successful six-year contract managing and operating King Fahd International Airport (KFIA) in Dammam, the General Authority of Civil Aviation (GACA) has extended its contract with Changi Airports International.

For the maximum permissible period of seven months from November 7, 2014, the extension of the contract will see Changi Airports International (CAI) continuing to work alongside GACA to strengthen the position of KFIA in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

The past six years has seen a team of resident members from CAI who all specialise in key aspects of airport management, stationed in Dammam to work with the Saudi general managers to improve the management of the airport.

The team from CAI have assisted in improving the airport commercial and retail management, operations efficiency and service quality management, as well as hub and route development.

Since the cooperation began, KFIA has achieved a high-level of growth in the number of operating airlines, passenger traffic and city links. The airport is now served by 36 airlines to 65 cities, and in 2013, passenger volumes exceeded that of other airports within the catchment area for the first time in KFIA’s history.

Engineer Yousef Al-Dhahri, Director General of KFIA, said: “KFIA appreciates the contribution from our CAI colleagues and is glad to extend the management services agreement till June 2015. The close working relationship at the management level has led to many new ideas and initiatives that have been positive to KFIA. Together, we are confident that KFIA will meet its strategic development goals. GACA has supported the joint efforts and the travelling public can look forward to additional offerings in the coming year.”

Space within the terminal to house concessions has increased by more than 80 percent, and non-aeronautical revenue has more than doubled over the past few years.

Other enhancements to the airport include the instalment of an instant feedback system, infrastructure development initiatives to increase airport capacity, and the addition of both commercial and retail offerings to improve passenger experience.

CAI has customised staff training for senior management, middle managers, young professionals and general staff, and has planned over 8,000 training days to develop a skilled airport management team. Employees which showed potential were identified and supported through a specially-developed six-month Airport Professional Development Programme in Singapore.

Mr Lim Liang Song, Chief Executive Officer of CAI, said: “The close working relationship with GACA has enabled KFIA to achieve even more than the targets in its business plan. We are confident that KFIA will achieve its strategic goals and establish the pre- eminence of the airport in the region and contribute to Saudi Arabia’s aviation industry.”

In our chart, below, we highlight air capacity growth from Dammam's King Fahd International Airport over the past ten years.  The data shows that departure capacity from the airport has more than doubled over the past ten years with an average annual growth of 13.0 per cent between 2005 and 2014.  This average growth was exceeded last year when departure capacity fom the airport rose 13.3 per cent, the highest annual growth rate since 2010.

The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia's national carrier Saudia remains the largest operator from the airport, but it's share of capacity has fallen from 65.3 per cent in 2005 to 41.2 per cent in 2014 as additional competition has entered the market.  Local low-cost carier flynas was the second largest operator from the facilty in 2014 ( 9.4 per cent capacity share), while India's Jet Airways was the largest foreign carrier (6.7 per cent capacity share), just ahead of Qatar Airways (6.0 per cent capacity share).

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