Leave second international airport to the experts

A new international airport in Eilat, the Israeli resort town on the Red Sea, is not only a must for the tourism industry, but also for Israeli aviation infrastructure. 

This planned airport will also serve as an alternative for the country’s main international airport, Ben Gurion, in central Israel.

But in Israel not only does the left hand not know what the right one is doing, fingers in the same hand do not know what the other does.

After years of debating, the Israeli Airports Authority (IAA) decided that the new airport will be built in Timna, a short distance north of Eilat.

An internal IAA report reveals that building the Timna international airport near Eilat could create a “deadly” accumulated deficit that could endanger the existence of the authority as a viable body.

The continuing fight between the ministries of transport and finance is not helping.

Instead of accepting a proposal to build the new airport based on a build- operate-transfer (BOT) model, the ministries, on both sides of the fence and the IAA on it, are fighting and the likelihood of implementing the plan now looks very slim.

A BOT project would have created a new modern airport in two years. If a Chinese company had been chosen to build it, I’m sure that a bonus for early completion would have been a fact.

So, the latest twist in the stupid process again leaves Eilat without a proper airport.

Politicians should be involved in politics. National projects should be managed by experts.

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