Better infrastructure for the aviation sector will definitely help Asia develop

This is what Mr. Liew Mun Leong strongly believes, who is the chairman of two airports, the Surbana Jurong and Changi Airport Group. The truth is that it’s not a secret the fact that many people choose airplanes to travel around the world fast and comfortable. This form of transportation became more affordable in the past years, so regardless if we are talking about business or leisure travel, the aviation allows people to reach even the furthest locations on the globe. This is why from Mr. Leong’s point of view, the economic development of countries in Asia depends on a good infrastructure, and not just when it comes to roads, but also when it comes to aviation infrastructure.

At the moment, the Asian region cannot take pride in a good infrastructure, as there are many things that need to be done in this sector. Thus, at the 2018 edition of The Business Times Leaders’ Forum, business leaders like Mr. Leong spoke about the necessity to take action and change the situation of the infrastructure in the region. But, of course, nothing comes easy, and the challenges that come along were also discussed. The most pressing challenge will be, obviously, the lack of sufficient financial resources. Banks will not finance such projects if they do not provide all the required studies concerning the project’s feasibility and technical details. Besides this, Mr. Leong added that this kind of projects are also subjected to a wrong management, plagued by corruption, or turned into a true burden due to the existing bureaucracy. While investors may exist, any uncertainties or political instabilities can affect the trust in these projects.

But, having in mind that the urban areas in Asian countries are developing at alert rates and that the demand for these areas is on the rise, it is necessary for the infrastructure serving the aviation to be solved. Even the airports serving large capital cities in Asia, like Bangkok and Jakarta, are already facing a set of serious problems, like limited capacity. So, their need to be expanded immediately in order to meet the demand of people that want to travel to such locations. While there are approximately 100 airports in good shape in Asia, half of them need larger terminals, while one third could use bigger runways, and all of these should be ready until 2030. And planning for such operations must start as soon as possible, as it may take years to complete the action plan and complete the development of an airport, even if it is just about expanding and modernizing it.

Even those countries that completely lack this kind of infrastructure should start creating it, as they are rich in resources and by offering supply, demand won’t fail to appear soon. In other words, if you offer the best conditions, there will be people that would want to invest and develop an area.


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