Lithuania mulls new int'l airport: minister

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VILNIUS, June 17 (Xinhua) -- Lithuania is considering constructing a new international airport with significantly increased capacities and expanded infrastructure, Lithuania's Minister of Transport and Communications Rokas Masiulis said on Monday.

"Lithuanian airports have been facing increasing passenger flows in recent years. If the trend is to continue, a new airport might be built in the country," Masiulis said in an interview with the local news website Delfi.

The new airport might be built in a territory located between Vilnius and Kaunas, the country's two largest cities, and its expanded capacities would include a 3.2 km or 3.5 km long runway to enable large aircraft to land there.

Masiulis said the final decision on the new airport is expected in 2022. Construction could start in 2025-2026 and the new airport could be ready by 2030-2035.

"The airport's design will be innovative in a way that passengers arriving at the new airport would feel themselves in a technologically advanced country," Masiulis said.

Until the decision is taken, the authorities will continue to invest in the currently operating airports in the capital Vilnius, in the second largest city of Kaunas, and near the Baltic Sea resort of Palanga, the minister said.

In 2018, Lithuania's three airports served 6.3 million passengers and 61,000 flights, respectively 19 percent and 11 percent more than in 2017.

Last year, Lithuanian Airports, a state enterprise which manages the three airports, offered 15 new destinations and direct flights to 29 countries. From Lithuania, passengers could fly to 99 destinations in total. Enditem

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