Cabinet panel clears airport hotel planThe Cabinet’s Economic and Infrastructure Committee meeting on Friday cleared the Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal’s (Caan) proposal to lease out its 92 ropanies of land at Sinamangal for the construction of a five-star airport hotel, and other infrastructure, to host international MICE events.
The Cabinet’s Economic and Infrastructure Committee meeting on Friday cleared the Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal’s (Caan) proposal to lease out its 92 ropanies of land at Sinamangal for the construction of a five-star airport hotel, and other infrastructure, to host international MICE events.
Although Caan had only proposed a five-star airport hotel, the meeting told the government the large land plot could house all required infrastructure to set up an international-standard venue to host various tourism activities.
“Friday’s meeting agreed in principle to go ahead for a detailed project report (DPR) under the build-own-operate-transfer (BOOT) model,” said Tourism Ministry secretary Dinesh Kumar Thapaliya. “After the DPR is completed, we will invite prospective investors through a free competition to build the airport hotel and other necessary infrastructure.”
According to Caan’s plan, the land plot could be leased for at least 30 years, after which the land, the hotel and other infrastructure would be returned to it.
Tourism Ministry officials said the move was aimed at making commercial use of the underutilised land in such a prime location. They said the plan also aimed at facilitating tourism, offering accommodation to travellers passing through Tribhuvan International Airport (TIA).
Building a luxury airport hotel near the country’s sole international airport would also help promote tourism as well as serve as the transit for passengers, they said.
As the proposed hotel would be financially viable due to its ideal location and proximity to the airport, there could be a number of investors, government officials estimated.
An Armed Police Force unit currently occupies the plot. Tourism and Home ministries and Caan have agreed to relocate the APF unit after the Cabinet approves the project.
On November 7, 2013, the Finance Ministry had approved the Caan proposal after the Tourism Ministry gave its go-ahead in January, 2013.
The proposal was then sent to the erstwhile Cabinet seeking its approval, was the latter returned the proposal and asked Caan to submit details about the land.
However, the plan was revived by the new government. There are currently nine five-star hotels in Nepal—seven in Kathmandu and two in Pokhara.