By Choi Kyong-ae
SEOUL, Aug. 14 (Yonhap) -- Over 700 million passengers have traveled through Incheon International Airport in the past 19 years, the airport's operator said Wednesday.
The number of passengers who have used the country's main airport, located west of Seoul, exceeded the 700 million mark this week since its opening in March 2001, according to the Incheon International Airport Corp. (IIAC).
The IIAC expects the number of passengers using the Incheon airport will reach 100 million per year by 2023 helped by its recent expansion.
The IIAC plans to invest 4.2 trillion won to expand the No. 2 passenger terminal of the airport, build the No. 4 runway and enhance connecting roads to serve more passengers, the statement said.
In 2018, the Incheon International Airport ranked fifth in terms of number of international passengers who used it, which is often described as the hub airport of Northeast Asia, following the Dubai International Airport, the London Heathrow Airport, the Hong Kong International Airport and the Amsterdam Airport Schiphol, it said.
The Incheon airport ranked seventh in the previous year.
The Airports Council International forecast the number of global airline passengers will jump to 15.7 billion by 2031 from 8.3 billion in 2017 on competition to expand airport facilities amid rising travel demand across the world, the statement said.
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