Dubai airport records double-digit passenger growth

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By Abdul Basit  www.khaleejtimes.com

DUBAI — Dubai International Airport recorded a double-digit year-on-year growth in passenger numbers during July, but freight volume suffers a slight decline, its operator Dubai 
Airports said.

Dubai Airports owns and manages the operation and development of both of Dubai’s airports – Dubai International as well as Dubai World Central — Al Maktoum International.

It’s latest traffic numbers reveal that Dubai International handled a total of 4.7 million passengers in July compared to 4.3 million in July 2010, a year-on-year increase of 9.7 per cent, the company said in emailed statement on Thursday.

“Not only did we set a new record, we surpassed the previous high point by over 400,000 passengers,” said Paul Griffiths, chief executive officer of Dubai Airports.

Year-to-date traffic reached 29.3 million up nine per cent compared to 26.9 million in the corresponding period in 2010, according to the statement.

Dubai International offers more flights to more destinations by more airlines than ever before which has had an almost exponential effect on connectivity and customer choice.

“Combined with Dubai’s burgeoning attractiveness as a centre for business and tourism, this is sure to fuel future expansion,” Griffiths said.

The largest regional traffic growth in July in terms of total passenger numbers was recorded on routes to and from AGCC (over 218,987), the Indian subcontinent (over 68,063), Western Europe (over 58,586) and North America (over 37,435).

The fastest growing regions on a percentage basis were AGCC (over 34 per cent), North America (over 28.3 per cent), Eastern Europe (24.3 per cent) and South America (over 18.5 per cent).

“Dubai International is currently ranked as the fourth busiest airport worldwide for international passenger traffic. However, we are hot on the heels of Hong Kong International, and aspire to take over the number three spot by the end of the year,” Griffiths added.

On a country level, the largest gains were seen on traffic to and from Saudi Arabia (over 127,882 passengers), the USA (over 38,070) and Qatar (over 35,210).

Aircraft movements during July totalled 27,166, up 4.2 per cent from the 26,065 posted during the same period last year. Year to date aircraft movements numbered 317,664 up 6.8 per cent from 297,355 posted during the first seven months of 2010.

July air freight volumes dipped slightly as Dubai International handled 192,538 tonnes of freight compared to 197,845 tonnes during the same period in 2010, down 2.7 per cent. Year-to-date Dubai International has handled a total of 1,250,489 tonnes of cargo, compared to 1,252,505 tonnes during the same period last year, a contraction of 0.16 per cent. More info

—abdulbasit@khaleejtimes.com

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