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The Greek government has announced its plan to build a new airport on the island of Crete in order to replace the over-stretched Nikos Kazantzakis International Airport of Heraklion, the second busiest airport of Greece at present, which currently handles about five million passengers every year.
The present Nikos Kazantzakis Airport is very close to Heraklion town and causes many problems in peak seasons. This prompted the government to opt for a new modern airport. According to Transport Minister Michalis Liapis and Merchant Marine Minister Manolis Kefaloyiannis, the new airport, whose cost is estimated at about one billion euros, will become functional within the next 8 to 10 years and will be partly funded by private investors.
Apart from a commercial airport, the new airport will function as an air-cargo transport hub for the Eastern Mediterranean region. Its location is about 30 minutes drive from the centre of Heraklion.