He said that the first passengers are expected to land in this airport next year.
Kukës airport will offer low-cost flights and will be the second airport in the country. Currently, Tirana International Airport Mother Teresa is Albania’s only operational airport.
The airport, which is officially called Kukës International Airport Shaikh Zayed is named after a major founder of the United Arab Emirates, Shaikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, who personally financed the project.
The airport was completed in 2006 but remained out of operation as Tirana International Airport (TIA) had the exclusivity for international flights.
The construction of Kukës airport started in May 2003 and finished in October 2005 with a total investment of about USD 20 million.
However, the airport was never put into operation because of the exclusivity on international flights enjoyed by the concessionary “Tirana Airport Partners” company of Tirana International Airport (TIA) for the 20-year period of 2005-2025. In 2016 the government reached an agreement with the company to remove the exclusivity for international flights to TIA.
Kukës airport is expected to have 300,000 passengers a year.