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Minister Stavreski: Improved airport infrastructure, Gov’t measures led to more passengers

The number of passengers at Macedonian airports in the first half of 2015 has increased twofold compared to the same period in 2009, prior to the enhancement of the airport infrastructure, said Vice Premier and Finance Minister Zoran Stavreski on Wednesday.

Stavreski said improved airport infrastructure and Government measures in recent years have increased the number of passengers and tourists in Macedonia, while the country’s top ranking among states of former Yugoslavia over airport infrastructure in the latest World Economic Forum report has confirmed this.

“Airport infrastructure is one of the ways to attract tourists and it is a fact there are more tourists visiting Macedonia following the construction and reconstruction of the Skopje and Ohrid airports”, Stavreski told reporters during a visit to Butel municipality.

According to available data, 634,192 persons landed at the two airports in the first half of 2015, compared to the 270,249 in 2009, prior to the airports’ overhaul.

“The increase in the number of passengers is twofold. Investments in tourism infrastructure represent a prerequisite for increasing the number of tourists in the country”, added Stavreski.

He said Government measures for subsidizing tour­-operators and low­-cost airlines, improvement of the travel offer, construction of new tourism facilities and overhaul of cultural traits have also contributed to the attraction of more tourists.

The FinMin also praised the work of airport concessionaire TAV.

“It is no coincidence that Skopje-­based airport ‘Alexander the Great’ has been declared the best small airport in Europe over the past couple of years”, underlined Stavreski.