Buka Airport to be closed indefinitely until safety issues addressed

20 December, 2018

Papua New Guinea's National Airports Corporation (NAC) informed the Autonomous Bougainville Government (ABG) that Buka Airport will be closed indefinitely due to ongoing safety and security concerns in the region (Radio NZ/Fiji Times, 20-Dec-2018). NAC MD and CEO Richard Yopo: "The reason for the closure is the heightened safety and security risk that is imposed on aircraft operating into and out of Buka with no fencing... Interfering with and damaging PAPI lights, pedestrians and animals crossing, vehicles driving on the runway and the runway strip being used as a playground by the nearby village and Buka town residents has been a norm". Mr Yopo added the airport will not be reopened until the ABG addresses all concerns.