SOFIA (Bulgaria), April 6 (SeeNews) - Passenger numbers at Bulgaria's Sofia international airport fell 52.9% year-on-year to 269,419 in March, as many flights were cancelled due to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, the airport operator said on Monday.
Aircraft take-offs and landings decreased 31% year-on-year to 3,389 in March as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, Sofia Airport said in a statement.
Cargo handled at the airport fell 7.1% to 1,920 tonnes in March.
On Friday, Bulgaria's parliament said that it has approved the government's proposal to extend the state of emergency due to the COVID-19 pandemic by a month until May 13.
As of Monday, there are 541 confirmed COVID-19 cases in Bulgaria, including 21 deaths related to the infectious disease as well as 39 recoveries.
In July 2019, Bulgaria's transport ministry picked a consortium led by French-based Meridiam Eastern European Investments as winner of a tender for awarding a 35-year concession contract to run Sofia Airport. The ministry's decision was appealed by all four other candidates, which filed bids for the contract, but their complaints were dismissed by the competition regulator. The regulator's decision was subsequently challenged by one of the bidders in the tender.