Uganda's Entebbe Airport Expansion 90% Complete, Capacity Set to Increase

Entebbe Airport expansion nears completion, boosting Uganda's tourism and economic growth. New terminal to increase capacity to 3.5M passengers annually.

Israel Ojoko
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Uganda's Entebbe Airport Expansion 90% Complete, Capacity Set to Increase

Uganda's Entebbe Airport Expansion 90% Complete, Capacity Set to Increase

The Civil Aviation Authority of Uganda (UCAA) has reported that the expansion and construction works at Entebbe International Airport are 90% complete as of April 2024. The major remaining project is the construction of a new 20,000 square meter terminal building, which is currently at 60% completion.

Other completed works include the resurfacing of runways and taxiways, construction of a new cargo center, and resurfacing of aprons. The airport also commissioned a new passenger terminal on January 10, 2024 and completed a new 100,000-ton cargo terminal and cargo apron.

Once the new terminal building is finished later this year, the airport's passenger handling capacity will be increased from the current 2 million to 3.5 million passengers per year. This expansion addresses the growing passenger traffic at Entebbe, which reached 171,990 international passengers in March 2024, with an average of over 6,000 passengers per day in the previous three months.

Why this matters: The expansion of Entebbe International Airport will boost Uganda's tourism industry and economic growth. As the country's primary gateway, the increased capacity and improved facilities will attract more international travelers and airlines.

The existing terminal from 1971 will also be upgraded and modernized as part of the $200 million development project being carried out by China Communication Company (CCC). In 2023, Entebbe Airport handled a total of 1.93 million passengers, up from 1.8 million in 2019 before the COVID-19 pandemic.

UCAA Director General Fred Bamwesigye addressed a recent heavy downpour on April 6, 2024, which caused temporary flooding in the car parking area. He explained that the water drained within 30-45 minutes and appealed to the public to be more patriotic by not sharing images that could negatively impact tourism. The UCAA is also optimistic about achieving favorable scores in an upcoming aviation security audit by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO).

Key Takeaways

  • Entebbe Airport expansion 90% complete, new 20,000 sq m terminal at 60% done.
  • Completed works include runway/taxiway resurfacing, new cargo center, and passenger terminal.
  • Passenger capacity to increase from 2M to 3.5M annually once new terminal is finished.
  • Expansion to boost Uganda's tourism and economic growth as primary international gateway.
  • UCAA addressing temporary flooding and optimistic about upcoming ICAO security audit.