Capt. Charles Pace, the director general of the Civil Aviation Directorate within Transport Malta, believes that Malta needs another airfield to take pressure off Malta International Airport (MIA), floating the idea of building one on land reclaimed from the sea.
Speaking to BusinessNow.mt, he argues that flying schools and pleasure flights, would be well served by a smaller airfield designed for general aviation, “without the delays and expense of operating from an international airport.”
He also points to the still nascent sectors of drone cargo flights and electrical vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) aircraft, saying that the experimental nature of these new technologies means it would be beneficial for their development as well as for the regular commercial flight sector if they were to use a separate airfield.
“Ideally, certain activities are taken away from the airport,” he says. “We should consider land reclamation to create an airfield for this type of activity, freeing space and activities at MIA.”
Capt. Pace has long made the case that having only one airfield limits the potential for Malta’s aviation sector, especially as activity intensified in line with the country’s growing economy and the ever increasing amount of tourist arrivals.
Foreign investment in Malta’s aviation sector also requires space around the airport, he points out, and moving activities that do not require such rigorous technical specifications to a smaller airfield would “give more opportunities to investors.”
Capt. Charles Pace speaking at the European Civil Aviation Conference in September 2023
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