Monday, June 10, 2013

Built and forgotten - Kraljevo Morava Airport

Serbia’s ghost airport

Almost a full year after construction work on Morava Airport, located in the central Serbian town of Kraljevo, was completed, the airport still hasn’t seen a single customer with the 3.000 square metre terminal building standing alone and forgotten. Despite plans for Jat Airways to operate two weekly flights between Kraljevo and Istanbul last summer, the service never came to light as the terminal building was only recently issued an operating license, allowing it to cater for passengers and aircraft. According to the Serbian government, it is unlikely that Morava Airport will see any flights until the runway, which can currently accommodate only small turboprop aircraft, is extended.

While the lengthening of the airport’s runway by 300 metres was planned to begin as early as last summer, the project has been put on hold since a promised ten million euro donation from the Turkish government to Morava Airport was never made. However, the Serbian Deputy Prime Minister, Rasim Ljajić, who recently visited Turkey, said documentation for the donation grant was recently sent by the Turkish authorities and a tender for the runway extension will open soon. Mr. Ljajić noted that the money will also be used to build a security fence around the airport in order for it to fulfil all international safety requirements. The Deputy Prime Minister believes that once the extension is completed Kraljevo will see commercial flights, adding that a Turkish airline has already shown interest to operate services to the city.


The Serbian government has poured 22 million euros into the airport project in hope it would stimulate business and investment in the area. Since the airport lies between several industrial cities, the government believes the likes of the Italian run Fiat-Zastava car manufacturer would make use of the airport. The Morava Airport terminal building features a duty free shop, exchange office, commercial office space, a detention centre, clinic and a cargo depot. A new control tower has also been built. There is widespread scepticism whether the money has been well spent since Niš Constantine the Great Airport, in eastern Serbia, has not experienced major success since it reopened for commercial use in 2004.

36 comments:

  1. The problem is that Serbia has no flag career.. JAT is long time ago Belgrade airline and there will be no interest soon to fly other airports then Belgrade.. One ATR72 would be more then enough to cover KVO and INI but like such a million other things in this country they don't really mind for people outside the capital..

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Why don't the people from the countryside move their ass and actually do something for themselves without bitching how Belgrade doesn't do anything for them.
      Kraljevo municipality is more than welcome to set aside some subventions, the same way Nis did. I am sure that Ryanair could be very well interested in launching two weekly flights from Hahn or Charleroi.

      Delete
    2. Some supercilious, big-headed, people from Belgrade should learn that Kraljevo, Valjevo, Niš, Novi Sad, Subotica...are not countryside and that world exists outside of that bullshit called belgrade too

      Delete
    3. or, for that matter, start an airline. I've never met so many disempowered people in my life until I came to Serbia.

      Quit crying and expecting someone else to do something!

      Delete
    4. Doot, I was reading your blog, if you don't like living in serbia, just leave. Go back to where you came from. I think it would be better for you. Your health would be better, you would not need to live in hell and so on.

      Delete
    5. Of course not because he works in Belgrade. We all just got used to his bitchiness, we just ignore him.

      Delete
    6. Thanks for enjoying my blog and for your helpful advice :)

      Delete
  2. To build airport without traffic and to spend 22 million EUR is such a Serbian way.

    Most of people here point that this airport has no potential, but... Even if Turkish starts with 3-4 flights per week, and even if there would be some charters, that is so far from 300.000 that makes airport profitable. So, that will be another tax payer money consumer for a long time! And that is optimistic scenario. For now new empty building for 2 years with non passengers!!!!

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    Replies
    1. Of course but this brilliant idea was thanks to DS who tried to buy votes in Pomoravlje.

      Delete
  3. In order to make Kraljevo Airport functional,in my opinion the best thing to do is simply to lease it to some private investors, who would I am sure be able to make it profitable in very short period of time, bearing in mind that airport is covering area with about 2 million people.

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    Replies
    1. Till now people in charge of Serbia is oposit that idea.On end of the day effective desition in business of politic, must stoping to bleeding tax payers money of truly poor Serbia! Have to lees to investor who have capacity and now how to bring airlines of fool brand, LCC airlines and cargo operators.End of gem. Entry in EU, mean
      Serbia have to "poll up the socks" in way of business and life in general.
      It is tuff, but solution is possible just must to introducing.
      Rodney Son & Co. Sydney / Kraljevo.
      How hard ministry working on that program needles to say.

      Delete
  4. So the new terminal has duty free shop, exchange office, commercial office space, detention centre, clinic and a cargo depot. But no runway or security fence?

    You cannot get a flight in or out of Morava, but you can see a doctor, change some money and pick up some duty-free.

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  5. No wonder the country is going bankrupt, so now they are looking to lease Beg airport for 30years to get some money back.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Always i hear the country is going bankrupt...
    Hello people the country IS bankrupt!

    ALREADY SINCE TWENTY YEARS!

    ReplyDelete
  7. They should have an own airline like Centavia was. BAe-146 doesnt need long runways and can land everywhere. Start flights to Istanbul and seasonal flights to Greece, Switzerland and Germany. Greetings from Basel.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. maybe not to much like Centavia, one that does not go bust will be better.

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    2. I do not think that length(2200m) of the runaway is problem but width(30m).For instance LONDON LUTON is only 2160m.

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    3. Centavia went belly up because they could not secure the necessary documentation to launch flights from Belgrade to Montenegro and Croatia. They actually had a decent business plan, shame they did not survive, would have been better to have them than Wizz Air. At least they would have been paying their taxes to Serbia and not Hungary.

      Delete
  8. Personally, I would be happy to see every major Serbian city having an airport, but that's not how it works. The simple turth is that there aren't enough passangers and there isn't enough economic activity to warrant scheduled flights from a place like Morava (or Nis for that matter). In a country with 25% unemployment and an average salary of 350 euros, who is going to fly?

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    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

      Delete
  9. That airport was just a huge waste of money for Serbian government

    ReplyDelete
  10. Serbia is a huge waste of money end off!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I don't understand why this comment was not removed by the administrator.

      Delete
  11. Hmmm... what exactly is the problem if the airport can "only" handle small turboprop aircraft? It's not like we need 200-seaters to Morava. A daily ATR-72 run would be perfectly fitting. It just smells like someone wants another 10% of something...

    ReplyDelete
  12. I think that ATR-42/72 will be biggest airliner ever that Morava could expect. Even if Vrnjacka Banja become something like Karlove Vary Spa they never have need for longer or wider runway.

    ReplyDelete
  13. Doot is spot on. All these municipalities could actually start an airline or subsidise an existing one (even Jat for that matter).

    But, on the other hand, what can you expect from local politicians who are accused of skimming money marked for reconstruction after the earthquake.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I would like to suggest that it's not really up to politicians.

      Do politicians decide where airplanes fly in Canada? US? UK?

      This is some strange victim of communism thinking.

      Governments aren't there to provide for people. It's up to people to make something of their lives. Get together and start an airline company, if there's money to be made. Made a plan to lease small planes and take it to investors all over the world. Get feedback from the investors. Maybe they tell you the government need to make some allowances. Get that in writing. Take that to the politicians.

      Don't look to politicians for a helping hand, look at the end of your own arm for one.

      Delete
    2. You got to be joking or even better, can you tell us on which planet you are leaving .

      Delete
    3. joking about what?

      That people can actually do something if they want instead of cry?

      Delete
  14. Despite the great dirty campaign, Morava Airport with its surroundings is to be the most promising and the most beautiful airport in Serbia

    For all the good people who want to learn more / and to help/ about Morava airport and its surroundings, please see source:

    https://plus.google.com/110374448261537168647/posts
    http://viamorava.blogspot.com/2013/03/aerodrom-morava.html

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  15. Can you post an update on the situation a year on?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Unfortunately, the situation is still exactly the same.

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    2. Shame, nothing at all ? Have you had a chance to reach out to relevant ministries? Etihad deal effectively killed any chance of Morava airport commencing operations.

      Delete
    3. A few days ago the Serbian Prime Minister said the concession of Belgrade Airport will likely include both the airport in Nis and Kraljevo/Morava.

      Delete
  16. Genius. While UK government forced BAA to divest Gatwick and Stansted in order to enable healthy competition, we do the opposite. Wow!

    ReplyDelete
  17. http://www.kraljevo.in.rs/2014/08/uskoro-zavretak-aerodroma-morava/

    ReplyDelete

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