Chinese capital Beijing will start building a second airport before 2010, the General Administration of Civil Aviation (CAAC) said on Tuesday.
This goal was included in the national civil airport development plan, which covers the years up to 2020. Under the plan, the number of airports nationwide will rise to 190 or so by 2010, including 55 for both civilian and military purposes.
The location of the second Beijing airport, which will be for domestic services, is yet to be decided. However, CAAC officials said that it would probably be in the southern part of the capital, near the Yongding River.
Data from the agency show that last year, 148 airports on the mainland handled 387.59 million passengers and 8.61 million tons of cargo and mail, up 16.8 percent and 14.3 percent year-on-year, respectively.
Beijing Capital International Airport, the country's largest and busiest, handled 53.47 million passengers last year, putting it among the world's 10 busiest.
Its new Terminal 3, a major expansion project undertaken in preparation for an anticipated surge in passengers during the Olympics this summer, had its first commercial flight after opening on Feb. 29.
(Xinhua News Agency, March 19, 2008)