Posted by Neil King
The first aircraft landed at Al Maktoum International in Dubai yesterday (June 20th) ahead of the huge airport's official opening for cargo business on June 27th.
Emirates, Dubai's flag-carrying airline, was awarded the honour of landing one of its three B777 freighters at the airport as part of operational testing procedures, Arabian Business reported.
Al Maktoum International is planned to be the world's largest airport when it is fully completed, comprising five runways and a total capacity of 160 million passengers a year, in addition to 12 million tonnes of cargo.
Arabian Business referred to one of its previous interviews with Andrew Walsh, Dubai World Central's (DWC) vice-president for cargo and logistics, who suggested the airport would begin passenger operations in the first quarter of next year.
"The planning date is spring of 2011 - so we're looking at the end of March for the start of passenger flights," he said.
"Right now, the passenger terminal in the final stages of fit-out. Once we've got the cargo terminal open and the operations are settled, we'll move into the operational readiness process for the passenger terminal through the later part of this year and the early part of next year."
Al Maktoum International is the centrepiece of the $33 billion DWC project.