The Welsh government said it will buy Cardiff airport for a total investment of 52 million pounds ($78.6 million) from Spain’s Abertis Infraestructura SA.
The airport will be managed at “arm’s length” on a commercial basis and a chief executive will be announced in “due course,” the government said in a statement today. David Rowe-Beddoe, a lawmaker in the upper house of the U.K. Parliament, will act as chairman on the airport’s board.
“Cardiff airport is a vital piece of economic infrastructure and a vital gateway to Wales,” First Minister Carwyn Jones said on Twitter.
About 1.6 million people travel through the Cardiff airport every year, according to the website of former owner, Barcelona, Spain-based Abertis. Opened as a military airport in 1942, the facility offers more than 50 direct connections to the U.K., Europe and the U.S.