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Aviation

Fraport signals interest in new Istanbul airport

The operator of Germany's biggest airport in Frankfurt has indicated it's contemplating bidding for an operating concession for Istanbul's new and third hub. It's billed to become the world largest airport.

Germany's Frankfurt airport operator Fraport on Friday signaled its interest in obtaining an operating concession for the third aviation hub in Istanbul, Turkey, to be opened in 2017.

"We'll be looking at the call for bids very carefully," Fraport told Reuters news agency, adding that no tender-related documents were available yet. The company said Turkey was a very interesting market and stated that it had already fared well in the country as the majority shareholder of the Antalya airport for holidaymakers.

Istanbul's new hub is scheduled to deal with some 90 million passengers a year, with the potential of eventually welcoming 150 million people which would make it the biggest airport in the world.

One more try

"Should we take part in the bidding for Istanbul, we'd most likely do that together with a partner to spread risks," Fraport said. Usually, the company applies for an operating concession with a validity of several decades.

However, recent attempts to obtain such concession have all failed. Last month, Fraport was unsuccessful in securing a concession for one out of seven Portuguese airports up for tender.

Besides Antalya, Fraport already operates a hub in Lima and two others in Bulgaria. The company gets about a fifth of total revenues from its business abroad.

hg/hc (Reuters, dpa)