Ljubljana Jože Pučnik Airport is revisiting plans to build a new passenger terminal with a final decision on the project to be made by late March. In 2013 minority shareholders, which have since been squeezed out, rejected plans for the construction of a 57 million euro new terminal building. Speaking to the "Finance" daily, the airport's General Manager, Zmago Skobir, now says, "The owners [Fraport] will make a decision by the end of March. The terminal would expand towards Šenčur and would be slightly smaller than the one previously planned. However, beforehand, it is necessary to look at all the calculations. We are in a better position now because the trends have changed, Adria Airways has a new owner and there is a greater understanding of the investment". He added, "The construction of the new terminal would cost fifteen to twenty million euros and work could begin immediately".
In 2013, the European Union agreed to fund 22% of Ljubljana Airport's new terminal but the project was cancelled after minority shareholders refused to give their support as the airport was in the midst of its privatisation process and the country was still dealing with the fallout from the global financial crisis. The new facility was meant to cover an area of 31.200 square metres, with its opening planned for 2015. Following Fraport's takeover, the construction of a new terminal was put on hold with greater focus put on revamping existing facilities. "Under current plans, the overhaul of the existing terminal would begin this autumn and it should be fitted with new technology. We have already made some quick fixes to improve passenger flow", Mr Skobir said.
Ljubljana was the only capital city airport in the former Yugoslavia to see its passenger numbers decline in 2016. It handled 1.404.831 travellers, down 2.3% on the year before. Commenting on the results, Mr Skobir explained, "The figures recorded in 2007 and 2008 were a result of Adria's far-reaching network, which then collapsed. In 2008 there was also more traffic due to Slovenia's presidency of the European Union. In 2011 and 2012, numbers fell by 30% and we lost between 300.000 to 400.000 passengers. This was a big blow for us and it took several years to recover". The head of Ljubljana Airport added, "In 2015 numbers grew 10% and last year's decline was down to Adria's restructuring. In November and December 2016 figures stabilised. Adria's new owners are obviously doing the right thing and the market is growing. Foreign carriers flying to Ljubljana are constantly seeing passenger growth and in this sector we have already overtaken figures from 2007 and 2008. In 2008, Adria held an 80% passenger share, today it is a solid 60%. The fact of the matter is that Adria's restructuring was not as fast as we expected". Mr Skobir noted that the airport has introduced a flexible pricing policy for airlines and is doing its best to attract new carriers. However, fuel prices at Ljubljana Airport, state taxes and other charges, which the airport has no control over, continue to act as a deterrent.