A weak start to the year for Europe’s leading cargo airports

Frankfurt Airport

January was another tough month for airports around Europe as freight volumes continued to decline on a year ago.

Figures from Airports Council International (ACI) Europe show that cargo volumes decreased by 2.4% year on year during the month, with losses concentrated at European Union (EU) airports (-3.2%) while non-EU facilities were up 1.9%.

This follows on from an increase of 1.8% last year, although performance did weaken as the year progressed. In the final quarter, for example there was a 0.5% decline compared with the previous year.

It should be noted, however, that year-on-year comparisons can be affected by the timing of the Chinese New Year and a better picture of how the market is progressing can be found when looking at the first quarter as a whole.

Among the top 10 European airports for freight traffic only two posted gains in January: Liège (+13.9%) and Madrid (+5%).

Of the region’s top cargo airports, Frankfurt registered a decline of 2.3% year on year to 154,302 tonnes, Paris CDG was down 2.6% to 149,000 tonnes and London Heathrow slipped 1.8% to 130,692 tonnes. Schiphol was also down, declining by 7.9% year on year to 122,643 tonnes.

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