Abu Dhabi Airports chief steps down but Midfield Terminal on track for 2017

Abu Dhabi Airports Company (Adac) said that its chief executive is stepping down with the Dh10 billion Midfield Terminal project on track to open in 2017.

Tony Douglas, who joined in 2013, is taking over as the chief executive of Defence Equipment and Support at the UK’s defence ministry, a statement said.

His departure comes at a crucial point in the development of Abu Dhabi International Airport.


Annual passenger numbers are expected to hit 27 million by the end of next year, just ahead of the move to the Midfield Terminal.

“The Midfield Terminal building is currently 45 per cent complete,” Adac said. “It remains on track for opening in 2017.”

The Midfield Terminal project is a major part of the Abu Dhabi Economic Vision 2030.

The 700,000 square metre terminal and the extra runway to go with it are expected to increase airline passenger traffic into the capital to more than 40 million a year.

Last year Abu Dhabi airport handled 20 million passengers.

The area surrounding the new terminal will also undergo a transformation, according to the plans, with new roads and aircraft parking stands.

“Mr Douglas’ departure is a loss for the strategic direction for Abu Dhabi International Airport,” said Saj Ahmad, the chief analyst at StrategicAero Research.

“But there won’t be a knee- jerk decision to step down. The plans for Midfield Terminal are set and the milestones are being met.”

Before joining Adac, Mr Douglas brought Abu Dhabi’s Dh26bn Khalifa Port project to fruition – delivering it on time and within budget in December 2012.

Earlier, Mr Douglas delivered London Heathrow’s £4.3bn (Dh23.5bn) Terminal 5 project.

He also led the programme management team in the build-up to the London 2012 Olympics.

selgazzar@thenational.ae

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