Ownership of Cardiff airport is to change hands with the Welsh government planning to buy it from owner TBI.
An agreement has been reached and the government is to work towards a purchase over the next few months.
The airport would be run on a commercial basis by an independent operator on behalf of the government.
It will not receive subsidies and should make a “return to the Welsh taxpayer”, according to first minister Carwyn Jones.
He declined to say how much the deal would cost but Welsh government sources told the BBC it was likely to be “tens of millions”.
The first minister said the government would “set the direction for the airport” after taking ownership.
Long-haul routes to Dubai and other places in the Middle East would be very useful as would flights to North America, said Jones.
The first priority was to increase the footfall of passengers.
“That means more short-haul in the short term,” he said.
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