16 December 2013
The government will not at any point of time revise the opening date of the first hybrid airport, Kuala Lumpur International Airport 2 (klia2) as the main contractors have pledged to deliver it by end of January 2014.
Deputy Transport Minister Abdul Aziz Kaprawi, who heads the klia2 taskforce which monitors progress of the multi-billion ringgit project, said from the meeting that he had last Thursday with the management of Malaysia Airports Holdings Bhd (MAHB) and UEM Construction Sdn Bhd-Bina Puri Holdings Bhd joint venture, the main contractor of the terminal building, an assurance has been given that the works will be completed as per schedule.
“Overall, the airport is 98% completed and remaining 2% involves final touch-up works. At the moment, it is behind schedule, however the contractors have one and a half months more to complete the 2% remaining works. So, I don’t see any relevance in another delay to occur,” he told The Malaysian Reserve in a telephone conversation last Friday.
Abdul Aziz was responding to a news report last Friday claiming that klia2 will miss its May 2 deadline due to construction issues.
“As long as the contractors deliver the finished project by Jan 31, 2014, the operational readiness and airport transfer (ORAT) process will start from Feb 1, 2014. I am confident everything will be on schedule and will be in place by May 2, 2014. We will not compromise on anymore delays,” he said.
On June 2013, after five delays, MAHB announced April 30, 2014, as the new deadline for completion of the project and set May 2, 2014, as the new operational date of the project.
The current cost for the construction of klia2 has increased to RM4 billion from its initial cost of RM2 billion due to change in main airport plan including automation of the baggage handling system and increase in number of customs checkpoints.
The initial project delivery date was 20 months after earthworks began in 2010.
Meanwhile, MAHB in its latest filing to Bursa Malaysia last Friday stated it was monitoring the progress of the klia2 construction and expressed concern over the slippage in the work schedule of the main terminal building.
“We reiterated to the terminal building contractor that this project is of national importance and therefore they should make every endeavour to complete on time as committed by them for the May 2, 2014, opening of klia2,” it said.
It added that the special taskforce under the purview of Abdul Aziz is also aware of those concerns and is continuing to monitor the construction works “diligently”.
The works on the aeronautical ground lighting and air traffic control systems are progressing on schedule, while the apron, third runway and taxi-way and other infrastructure facilities have been completed, it said.
“The terminal building is scheduled to be completed together with the certificate of completion and compliance (CCC) by end of January 2014, to enable ORAT to commence for three months before the opening date of May 2, 2014,” MAHB said.
klia2 is built to be Malaysia’s new international airport hub, that allows seamless connectivity for both local and international low-cost plus full service carriers.
The new terminal measures about 257,000 sqm, with 60 gates, 8 remote stands, 80 aerobridges, plus a retail space of 32,000 sqm to accommodate 225 retail outlets and designed to cater to 45 million passengers a year with a built cost of around RM4 billion. Read more about klia2 facilities.