The Islamabad International Airport in Pakistan has demonstrated exceptional performance in terms of passenger traffic despite facing challenges related to travel restrictions and security concerns within the country. Official figures released by the Pakistan Civil Aviation Authority highlight that the airport experienced its highest-ever influx of passengers in the year 2023.
Throughout the year, the airport facilitated an impressive 11,000 local flights, effectively managing the travel needs of 1.5 million passengers. Simultaneously, the count for international flights exceeded 20,000, serving a substantial total of 4.5 million passengers. In a collective sense, the airport efficiently handled 6 million passengers through a combined total of 31,000 local and international flights. This performance not only underscores the operational efficiency of the airport but also speaks to the dedication and effectiveness of the staff managing its operations.
The Pakistan Civil Aviation Authority, in a social media post on Monday, highlighted the airport’s bustling and active operations, emphasizing the diverse range of connections it provides. The increased passenger count further underscores the airport’s significance as a major aviation gateway in the region.
It is noteworthy that the government has taken a strategic decision to outsource the operations at the Islamabad International Airport for a period of 15 years. The preparations for this outsourcing initiative are currently underway. A Transaction Advisory Services Agreement (TASA) has been formally signed between the Pakistan Civil Aviation Authority and the International Finance Corporation (IFC) to facilitate the outsourcing of operations for three international airports in Islamabad, Karachi, and Lahore.
The government has clarified that, as part of this outsourcing arrangement, only specific components related to the operation and management of the airport will be outsourced. Critical services, including the Air Traffic Control Tower, Rescue and Fire Fighting Services, and Air Navigation services, will continue to remain under the administrative control of the Pakistan Civil Aviation Authority.
The process involves a bidding phase, with the successful bidder for Islamabad International Airport expected to be disclosed after the completion of the bidding process. As for the timeline, the award of the concession for outsourcing operations is anticipated to be finalized before June 2024. This strategic move aims to enhance efficiency, management, and overall services at the airport while maintaining control over essential aviation services.