16 Apr 2022
On 28 March 2022, the Department of Aviation and the Bahamas Ministry of Tourism and Aviation announced the official launch of the Bahamas airports public private partnership (PPP) procurement process for the Grand Bahama International Airport.
This follows a January 2022 announcement from Minister of Tourism, Investments and Aviation Chester Cooper that the Grand Bahama Airport was "priority number one" in this regard, expressing concern that the airport was "not a welcoming experience for investors to Grand Bahama".
The airport, which comprises 2,500 acres, including an 11,000 foot runway, was severely affected by Hurricane Dorian in September 2019, resulting in damage costing approximately $60 million. It was acquired by the government in Spring 2022.
The PPP programme, estimated to cost $200 million, aims to seek:
experienced and qualified private sector partners to design, build, finance, operate, maintain, and develop the Grand Bahama International Airport to upgrade/replace facilities, generate traffic to grow revenue, and further enhance the quality of service at the airport site.
According to Acting Director of Aviation at The Bahamas Ministry of Tourism, Investments & Aviation, Kenneth Romer, the programme will:
Interested parties are invited to view and repsond to the government's request for pre-qualifications on the Bahamas Department of Aviation website. Shortlisted applicants will be eligible to submit a request for proposal, which is currently scheduled for the second quater of 2022.
It is expected that the PPP programme will extend to nine other airports on the Bahamas. The launch of the programme is a step in the right direction to assist with the necessary upgrades required for those airports in the Bahamas where there has been a significant growth in air traffic.
Llewellyn V Boyer-Cartwright