Cabinet of Ministers grants Zhytomyr Airport international status with 24/7 operating hours
The Cabinet of Ministers has opened a state border checkpoint at Koroliov Zhytomyr Airport for international freight and passenger services.
The Government adopted the relevant order at a meeting on June 30, 2021, according to zhitomir.info.
"Opening an international border crossing point at Zhytomyr Airport (Koroliov International Airport "Zhytomyr," a subsidiary of Limited Liability Company "Akord") for cargo and passenger air services with a permanent mode of operation and round-the-clock hours," the document stated.
According to the text of the explanatory note to the order, opening international flights will help meet the needs of the region's population and economy in air transportation and the realization of the region's tourist potential.
Today, Zhytomyr Airport is a viable subsidiary that can provide landing, takeoff, parking, and service provision for aircraft, passengers, and cargo.
The relevant draft order was to be considered by the Cabinet of Ministers on February 17, but during the creation of the agenda, the Minister of Infrastructure Vladyslav Kryklii asked to remove the item about Zhytomyr Airport from the agenda.
Mayor Serhii Sukhomlyn explained that the issue of the checkpoint was removed from consideration because Zhytomyr Airport was not on the priority list, in late April, there was an order from the Ministry of Infrastructure to include it in this list, and in early July, the city authorities expected a decision.
"Obtaining the international status allows us to negotiate with other airlines to attract them to the Zhytomyr airport: they'll see that there's state support, international status, and the reconstruction of the runway is underway. And we need to launch the airport in 2022 because Kyiv Airport (Zhuliany) is undergoing a complete reconstruction in 2023: it won't work for more than a year, and this gives us the opportunity to attract airlines to Zhytomyr," Sukhomlyn explained.
On June 18, 2021, the Department of Capital Construction of the Zhytomyr City Council announced a tender for the reconstruction of the airfield complex in Zhytomyr with an expected purchase price of UAH 476.3 million.
"According to the procedure, the international tender will last 2-2.5 months, and the runway reconstruction can begin only in September. We planned to make this strip 2,200 meters long, like the airport strip in Zhuliany, but now the modern world, especially low-cost carriers, is moving to new modifications of aircraft that need a strip 2,500 meters long. So we redesigned part of the project, moved equipment, changed configuration, and now the new project already provides a strip of 2,500 meters," the mayor of Zhytomyr explained.
The airport in Zhytomyr has existed since 1947, but after the collapse of the Soviet Union, it was used for a long time only by aviation enthusiasts. In 2011, it was even excluded from the register of civil airfields, after which it had the status of a runway.
However, in December 2015, Zhytomyr Airport received a new certificate of the airport, and in January 2016, it received the first aircraft in 25 years of downtime. In October 2020, the government commission recognized Zhytomyr Airport ready for international traffic.