Two Japanese companies said on Monday they will build Mongolia’s second international airport as Tokyo steps up business ties with the mineral-rich country.
Trading house Mitsubishi Corp and engineering firm Chiyoda Corp said in a statement that they had been awarded the construction contract worth 50 billion yen ($493 million) by the Civil Aviation Authority of Mongolia.
Work on the new airport, about 50 kilometres (30 miles) outside the capital Ulan Bator, would start later this year, they said.
Construction of a 3.6-kilometre (2.2 mile) runway and terminal buildings with a capacity to handle up to two million passengers a year was scheduled to be completed by October 2016, a Chiyoda spokesman said.
The project will be about 90 percent financed by Japanese government loans to Mongolia, the spokesman said.
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe visited Mongolia in March, seeking closer trade and diplomatic ties with the country due its vast mineral reserves and strategic location on neighbouring China’s northern border, as well as its diplomatic ties with North Korea.