Cardiff Airport to be bought by local government

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Cardiff Airport to be bought by local government

Author: David Howells - 20 February 2013

The Welsh government is expected to buy Cardiff Airport from Spanish owners Abertis for £50 million by the end of March, reports.

The deal is expected to see the government own the airport outright, with no clauses stipulating that further payments should be made depending on its future success. This would mean that even if the government manages to reverse the airport's fortunes, it wouldn't be susceptible to any charges from the previous owners.

Whilst a due diligence process will need to be undertaken before the deal is finalised, it's likely the airport could change hands within the next month.

The £50 million cost wouldn't be the only money invested into Cardiff Airport, however, with reports suggesting the government would also need to spend around £6 million per year developing it. Whilst most of this investment would be centred around development of new airline routes to try and improve passenger volumes, it could also expand the airport itself, which may prompt a need for steel benches and other airport furniture.

It is hoped that under the government's control, passenger numbers would triple from one million per year to three million.

In a statement released after the announcement, a government spokesperson told "The Welsh government has appointed a core team of specialist advisers and contractors, which includes KPMG and Eversheds, to assist us through the period of due diligence.

"As we have said repeatedly, it would not be appropriate to make any further comments on the proposed purchase while we undertake due diligence work."

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