"GAME-changing" multi-million pound plans for Leeds Bradford Airport have been revealed in a bid to put Yorkshire on the global map.

The ambitious vision for the airport will create a large number of construction jobs, an apprenticeship scheme, the use of local labour, plus another 200 jobs at the airport when complete.

The first phase, a new three-storey extension to its terminal building, will house a transformed international arrivals process.

It will also accommodate new, larger departure gates, seating areas, plus new retail and food and drink outlets.

Once the new £12m building is completed – scheduled for the end of 2019 - work will then begin on re-modelling the existing terminal building to provide a new security central search area and enhanced check-in facilities, in a £4 to £5 million project. There are also plans to simplify the way passengers move through the existing departure lounge.

Those works are expected to be complete by summer 2020.

The final phase will include the construction of a new pier, replacing the current passenger walkway with a two-storey structure, housing arrivals at ground level, with departures being processed at new boarding gates on the first floor.

David Laws, Chief Executive at Leeds Bradford Airport, said: "What you are going to see is a airport being transformed. You're going to see an airport that becomes fit for purpose.

"An airport that can deliver for a region the size of Yorkshire.

"A thriving region needs a thriving airport and we hope the people of our great county will see these latest plans a a real statement of intent as we continue to strive to create an airport Yorkshire can be proud of."

He said work is ongoing to improve business and leisure route offerings to "open up Yorkshire to new global opportunities".

New wide-bodied departure gates will mean the airport has the infrastructure to cater for larger aircraft.

Mr Laws said: "These departure gates ensure that any airlines which are attracted to Leeds Bradford Airport know that the infrastructure is then fit for purpose."

He added: "I gave an undertaking to the business community that we need to improve connectivity.

"If you take an area such as Bradford, there's a lot of exports, so improving connectivity into Europe for those businesses, I think, will give them the opportunity to go and do more and more.

"With Brexit coming one way or the other, I think this improved connectivity for smaller and medium-sized businesses based in Bradford - they will jump at the opportunity.

"My immediate ambition is to reach into places into Europe which we don't currently reach to. Then in the longer-term, we start becoming more ambitious and saying, like people that write into us, why can't we have a route to the Middle East?"

But he said airlines would be looking at the airport's infrastructure, plus the proposed train station, which Transport Minister Chris Grayling said was the next important step for the airport when he visited last month.

Mr Laws highlighted a recent Government report which said Leeds Bradford will be the fastest growing airport up until 2030.

"Now if that's the case, think of the opportunities for the whole of Yorkshire, the connectivity it opens," he said.

"It's so exciting, there's so much to be achieved, whether it's inbound tourism, whether it's inward investment or whether it's the opportunity for our businesses to really get out there."

Councillor Susan Hinchcliffe, Leader of Bradford Council and Chair of the West Yorkshire Combined Authority, welcomed the news.

She said: "I think it shows the seriousness of the new investors, that they actually want to grow the airport and therefore for us in Bradford, it's significant. They have to make sure they keep up with the competition, this is what they are doing, and they are also looking to get new carriers and new routes here which will open up new markets for Bradford businesses."

Henri Murison, Director of the Northern Powerhouse Partnership, added: "I think the key thing for Yorkshire what comes from this announcement is what it will mean for businesses.

"From a business perspective this is going to open up huge opportunities for business travellers to reach more destinations, significantly increasing the potential for this airport going forwards.

"The fact that new development isn't just about some new buildings, but it is critical in terms of route development, underpins the fact that more and more northern airports are being seen as a key part of transport connectivity.

"If we are going to succeed in the global economy post-Brexit, particularly to continue to build better links and try and secure our markets in Europe, having better connectivity to those markets helps to ensure that the northern economy and the economy here in Yorkshire can thrive and be part of a genuine Northern Powerhouse."

Sir Gary Verity DL, Chief Executive of Welcome to Yorkshire, said: “This is fantastic news for Yorkshire, bringing great benefits to both leisure and business travellers as well as the wider economy.

"David Laws and his team are to be applauded for the positive changes they are bringing to Leeds Bradford Airport.

"These latest plans are symptomatic of the scale of their vision and overall ambition to make the airport one the whole county can be proud of. Passengers will soon experience an airport truly fit for the 21st century."