AN airport has set out its ambitious plans for the future in an attempt to create more jobs and boost the region's economy.

Newcastle International Airport's Masterplan 2035 outlines how the site will be able to accommodate up to 9.4 million passengers in the next 15 years.

The Northern Echo:

Bosses say the final plan will enable the airport to compete in the global aviation marketplace whilst "delivering significant economic benefits to the North-East, surrounding regions and the rest of the UK".

It will also incorporate the site's new inbound tourism strategy, which will target thousands of extra tourists from across Europe and beyond - with the aim of boosting the regional economy.

The Masterplan also aims to further enhance the customer experience, including through the introduction of new technology to provide a seamless passenger journey, and it is hoped that improvements in aircraft performance will mean that future destinations can be served from the existing runway.

A possible extension of 700m at the eastern end has been safeguarded, thereby ensuring that the North-East has the opportunity to secure new long haul air routes in the future.

The Northern Echo:

By 2035, the number of jobs supported across the North-East could grow to 27,800, and the contribution to GVA could reach more than £2bn, according to the report.

Nick Jones, chief executive at Newcastle International Airport, said: “Newcastle Airport is a strong asset to the region – it is important that we have undertaken in the consultation process before completing our final masterplan for 2035.

“The airport is a global and regional gateway, therefore the connectivity that we provide is absolutely vital.

“This is why the masterplan is so important, and I hope that it will enhance the experience of the millions of passengers who will continue to use the North-East’s largest Airport for many years to come.”

James Ramsbotham, chief executive of the North East England Chamber of Commerce said: “We fully support this ambitious masterplan and its proposals to support the growth of the North-East economy.

“With more than five million passengers in 2018, Newcastle International Airport is key in ensuring our region is well connected which is so fundamental to both domestic and international businesses success.

“The breadth of measures such as those to increase inbound tourism will have a significant impact and increase visitor spending.

“We also welcome the work to improve transport links to and from the airport to ensure it become even more easily accessible for more passengers and businesses in the region.”