Tokyo’s Narita to Build Low-Cost Carrier Terminal by 2015

Tokyo’s Narita airport will build a terminal targeting low-cost airlines by 2015 as Jetstar Japan Co. and AirAsia Japan Co. are set to start flights this year from the nation’s busiest international hub.

The airport will build the facility north of Terminal 2 and will accept international low-cost carrier flights at Terminal 2 in the meantime, state-owned Narita International Airport Corp. said in a statement in Tokyo today. Domestic flights will be accepted at a temporary facility near Terminal 2, it said.

The hub, which opened Tokyo’s first dedicated business-jet terminal last week, is adding capacity to lure airlines as it competes with airports in Seoul, Beijing and Hong Kong, where landing fees are about half the price or less. The airport, about 70 kilometers (43 miles) from downtown Tokyo, is also competing with Haneda airport, located near the heart of the city, which is also adding capacity after opening a new runway in 2010.

Jetstar Japan, backed by Japan Airlines Co. and Qantas Airways Ltd.’s Jetstar, will begin flights from Narita in July and is targeting 100 billion yen ($1.2 billion) in annual sales within a few years. The carrier, also partly owned by Mitsubishi Corp., is considering expanding its fleet to 100 planes by the end of the decade.

AirAsia Japan, a venture between All Nippon Airways Co. and AirAsia Bhd., is due to start flights from Tokyo’s Narita airport in August. The carrier has predicted 10 million passengers annually in five years.

Narita charges $5,632 in landing fees and other costs for handling an Airbus SAS A320 with a three-hour turnaround, according to International Air Transport Association data. Seoul’s Incheon costs $2,983, Beijing charges $2,149 and Hong Kong is $1,807, according to the IATA.

Narita last month boosted total annual capacity to 250,000 takeoffs and landings a year from 235,000. That will rise to 270,000 by the end of March 2013, Kosaburo Morinaka, Narita Airport’s president, said last month.

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