Abu Dhabi: The plan to resume commercial flights at Kuwait International Airport from August 1 may cost the country thousands of passengers a day and has sparked a debate about the possibility ofprolonging it until August 2021, Kuwaiti media reported.
The Kuwaiti Cabinet has approved a three-stage plan to operate commercial flights from and to Kuwait from August 1, starting with 30 per cent capacity.
Kuwait suspended all commercial and international flights in March because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Al Rai newspaper said there is no country in the world that has drawn up a long-term plan adding the Kuwaiti government did not clarify whether phases of the announced plan are subject to change.
The Kuwaiti Civil Aviation announced that during the first phase the number of passengers will not exceed 10,000 per day. From phase two which begins from February 1, 2021 the number of passengers will not exceed 20,000 per day. The third phase will have anwith an operating rate of 100 per cent.
During the first stage, the airport will witness only the movement of passengers which will not exceed 1.84 million, onboard 18,400 flights.
The average number of departing and arriving passengers through Kuwait Airport daily in 2019 was about 42,000, with passenger traffic reaching 15.5 million. This means the six-month period of phase one is supposed to reach an average number of 7.78 million passengers.
According to conditions of the first phase, Kuwait Airport will lose about 32,300 passengers per day, indicating that the volume of decline in passenger traffic will reach 5.94 million during the first six months of operation.
As for the movement of airplanes, in the first phase, the number of daily flights will fall to less than a third, which means that Kuwait Airport will lose about 235 flights every day, compared to 2019 rates.