This was revealed by the Mbeya Regional Commissioner, Albert Chalamila when speaking to the people of Mbeya District when briefing them on various undertakings by the government.
Chalamila said SIA, even though completed still lacks several things including runway lights for night landing, the deficit that makes some people fail to fully utilise it while conducting their economic activities.
“Among strategies of the government is to ensure improvement of airports to international standards to allow big planes, including cargo planes to land and take-off through the day,” RC Chalamila said noting installation of the landing lights will enable business people to easily transport their goods to foreign countries.
Some farmers in Mbeya Region including Lupakisyo Mwakitalu said expansion of the airport will provide solution to delayed crops transportation.
Farmers in Mbeya use the air transport service to transport crops such as pyrethrum, beans and maize.
He said from government’s efforts in the purchase of planes, as now air transport costs are more bearable compared to the previous year when most of them could not afford to transport agricultural products by planes.
Mwakitalu said they are now using less time for conducting business activities as they can easily travel to various regions across the country.
Southern Highlands regions, including Mbeya region are famous for good climate and fertile land which is suitable for the production of horticultural crops hence the availability of the international airport is a boon for transportation of these products.