Grand opening of Ifuru Airport
Boasting a 1.2 km runway that spans the entire length of the atoll, the airport aims to improve the accessibility of the atoll. The government had been involved in the construction and financing of the airport, which is operated by Maldivian Airlines. Currently used for domestic flights to improve the connectivity of Raa Atoll, there are long-terms plans to develop the airport further, to complement the Maldives' four existing international airports:
– Gan International Airport, in Gan, Addu City
– Hanimaadhoo International Airport, in Hanimaadhoo, Haa Dhaalu Atoll
– Ibrahim Nasir International Airport, in Hulhulé Malé
– Villa International Airport, in Maamingili, Alifu Dhaalu
Over the years, improvements in the country's infrastructure have increased the number of tourists – including divers – visiting the island nation. As a result, the Maldives' tourism numbers has risen from around 9,000 in 1990 to approximately 27,000 in 2011.
As for now till 2017, the Ministry of Tourism plans to boost tourism even further by 28 percent, with the development of new islands and the opening of new resorts, catering to both general tourists and scuba divers.