Rwanda Kamembe Airport Upgrade to Boost Tourism Industry

The aviation industry is primed for further boost when refurbishment of Kamembe Airport in Western Province of Rwanda is completed.

The Rwf5.1 billion works that start in November will see the airport's runway extended to 2.2 kilometres from 1.5 kilometres to accommodate big aircrafts, as well as help decongest the airport. The refurbishment will help spur tourism as well as ease inland travel and enhance passenger safety.

China Road and Bridge Corporation Company has been contracted to undertake the six-month project.

Although the actual works will begin in November, site installation is expected to begin next month. The works involve resurfacing the runway, upgrading the taxiway, apron and airfield marking to make the airport secure and attractive.

According to economists, the project could in the short-term affect both aviation and tourism business, but ultimately become more profitable in the long run.

RwandAir, the national carrier, has already announced temporary suspension of flights to and from Kamembe Airport effective November 1, to pave way for the refurbishment.

The recent surge in the number of airlines and flights as the country continued to grow in leaps and bounds put RCCA under pressure to devise measures to improve aviation infrastructure, which prompted the upgrades at the Kigali International Airport and decision to construct Bugesera International Airport.