Manchester Airports Group (MAG) has confirmed its intention to participate in the tender process to operate Bulgaria’s Sofia airport.

MAG, which runs Manchester, Stansted and East Midlands airports in the UK, says its bid will be supported by Chinese construction firm BCEG – the company working with MAG on the Airport City UK project at Manchester airport.

The tender process for the operation of Sofia airport was started by the Bulgarian government on 5 July.

Charlie Cornish, CEO of MAG, said: “Airports bring the world closer together and act as significant economic catalysts for both the regional and national economies in which they operate, and we hope to be given the opportunity to deliver to the people of Bulgaria the world-class global gateway that they deserve.

“We have already undertaken a considerable amount of work in relation to this opportunity and have a clear vision as to how we will deliver a passenger experience and global route network for Sofia airport that is comparable to other top-tier airports around the world. We want to deliver direct international connectivity to Bulgaria to stimulate tourism and economic growth.”

Transport secretary Chris Grayling has also supported MAG’s bid, saying: “MAG has invested heavily in its airports in the UK and has seen consistent, sustainable growth. I am pleased to support their bid to share this success at Sofia airport and a trusted airport operator like MAG is the right company to be investing in Bulgaria as Britain seeks to strengthen its economic ties.”

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