ASTANA (TCA) — All restrictions on flights to the European Union countries have been removed from Kazakhstan airlines — five domestic airlines (Air Astana, SCAT, Komlux, Kazairjet, and Prime Aviation) have the right to fly to Europe, Minister of Investments and Development Zhenis Kassymbek said at the Government meeting on January 23, the official website of the Prime Minister of Kazakhstan reported.
The minister said that between November 22 and 30, 2017, the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) Commission audited Kazakhstan’s aviation security, which was a comprehensive check of the airport security system. According to preliminary estimates, ICAO experts noted significant progress in Kazakhstan and it is expected that the country will seriously improve its indicators in the ICAO rating. Official results will be published by February 1, 2018.
The minister noted that in the pilot mode, during the Expo-2017 in Astana last summer, a 72-hour visa-free regime was introduced for the citizens of China who transited through Astana and Almaty airports by Kazakh airlines, which was recently extended until the end of 2018. To further develop the transit potential, a similar regime for transit is being worked out for citizens of India.
The minister said that to date, Kazakhstan has almost completed the modernization of air transport infrastructure — for the years of independence, 15 runways and 11 terminals of Kazakhstan airports were reconstructed.
“Totally in 2017, Kazakhstan airports serviced 14.2 million passengers, which was 17% more than in 2016 (about 12.2 million passengers). Last year, the construction of a new terminal of Nursultan Nazarbayev Airport in Astana was completed, which will allow Astana to be developed as a regional hub in Central Asia,” Kassymbek said.