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AIIB to co-fund 'priority' central Polish airport

PR dla Zagranicy
Victoria Bieniek 27.04.2017 12:00
The Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) wants to partly finance the construction of a new airport in central Poland, which the country’s PM on Thursday said was a priority.
Photo: Pixabay.com/Fuzz.Photo: Pixabay.com/Fuzz.

Plans to build a central Polish airport near Łódź, in central Poland, was announced amid worries that Warsaw’s Chopin Airport will soon reach maximum capacity.

The project is expected to cost some PLN 20 billion (EUR 4.7 billion) on its own, or PLN 30 billion together with rail and logistics infrastructure.

According to onet.pl, Yee Ean Pang, who heads one of the AIIB's investment operations departments, said that the bank could in future co-finance the initiative if it were in line with the bank’s policy of promoting “interconnectivity” between the continents.

That means the airport would need to promise to affect passenger traffic to Asia, Pang said, adding that the bank has already spoken about it with Polish government representatives, according to onet.pl.

The AIIB, which comprises 52 countries, including Poland, is a new Chinese-government initiative, which offers an international finance institution alternative to US-dominated ones like the World Bank or the International Monetary Fund.

Polish Prime Minister Beata Szydło told public broadcaster TVP Info that she would in May travel to China for talks and to sign a deal.

Meanwhile, Poland’s infrastructure ministry and development ministry have drafted a bill for the airport’s construction.

In March, the head of the Polish Development Fund Paweł Borys said that the state-owned financial group had a rough plan for financing the investment which would not burden the state budget.

Borys also said that the Polish Development Fund had the capital to take part in the project.

Warsaw’s major Chopin airport in 2016 serviced nearly 13 million passengers and expects traffic of about 14 million this year. Some experts estimate Chopin Airport’s capacity at 20 million.

The planned Polish airport could complement China’s ambitious multi-billion dollar plans to build a new silk road, aimed at linking Asia, Africa and Europe by rail and water. (vb)

Source: PAP

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