Beijing Capital adjusts terminal deal

PUBLISHED : Friday, 27 February, 2009, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 27 February, 2009, 12:00am

Beijing Capital International Airport has agreed to assume the debt related to the building of Terminal 3 to settle the 27 billion yuan (HK$30.65 billion) cost of acquiring the world's largest stand-alone airport from parent company Capital Airport Holding.

Beijing Capital originally planned to pay for the acquisition through an A-share listing in the first half of this year. However, the central government's ban on new listings on the Shanghai and Shenzhen stock exchanges has put the scheme on hold.

Acquiring Terminal 3 would help the airport operator boost its annual handling capacity by 150 per cent to 90 million passengers and double its retail area.

The acquisition, announced in January last year, awaits approval from the State Council.

Beijing Capital has been operating Terminal 3 through a rental arrangement since February last year.

'We don't have other fund-raising plans to substitute for the A-share listing, since both parties have agreed on a new arrangement,' Shu Rong, Beijing Capital's company secretary, said yesterday.

Under the new plan, about 30 per cent of the consideration would come from Beijing Capital's internal resources, while 70 per cent would be settled by transferring the debt in Terminal 3 to the listed company, Mr Shu said.

The loans, mainly from Bank of China and the European Central Bank, are medium to long-term debt. Mr Shu did not disclose the interest rates.

The details of the new arrangement would be announced soon, including the exact proportion of equity and debt, he said.

Capital Airport Holding would issue 5 billion yuan in medium-term notes, Mr Shu said.

The three-year notes, for sale from March 3, would be used to reduce the financing costs and satisfy the airports' requirements for operating cash, according to, an official aviation industry website.

Citic Securities and Bank of China are said to be the sales agents.

Capital Airport has invested in and operates more than 30 mainland airports, including the international airports of Tianjin and Chongqing. It owns about 56 per cent of Beijing Capital.

Shares in Beijing Capital dipped 4.76 per cent to HK$3 yesterday.