President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih has announced plans for the development of Maafaru Airport into an international hub, serving as a base for an airline from the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

Supported by the UAE’s Abu Dhabi Fund for Development (ADFD), the project’s second phase will transform Maafaru Airport, creating the Maldives’ longest runway. This expansion will facilitate direct flights between Europe and the Maldives.

President Solih highlighted that the developers have been allocated islands near Maafaru for tourism development. This strategy will lead to the generation of additional employment opportunities, directly benefiting the residents of Noonu Atoll.

The ADFD outlined that the project’s scope includes constructing an approximately 2,200-metre-long runway, hangars, and service roads capable of accommodating Airbus A320-200 and Boeing 737 aircraft. F

The endeavour encompasses the construction of the airport’s main building, office structures, a fire station, control tower, and water desalination plant. The funding also supports infrastructure development and the establishment of power, communication, and water networks.

The initiative is anticipated to not only bolster tourism revenues but also attract investments, create job opportunities, and enhance the overall quality of life in the Maldives, according to ADFD.

Noonu Atoll is gaining prominence as one of the most exclusive tourist destinations in the country. The atoll already hosts top properties such as Soneva, Movenpick, and Sun Siyam Resorts. Additionally, its proximity to some of the Maldives’ premier luxury destinations further adds to its allure.