Leipzig/Halle cargo volumes boosted throughout pandemic

By Rachelle Harry

Leipzig Halle Airport aerial view 2018

Leipzig/Halle Airport (LEJ), Europe’s fifth-largest airfreight hub, saw its cargo volume increase to 114,502 tonnes in May this year — 5.4% higher than in April this year.

From January to May 2020, LEJ’s cago demand was 1.6% higher than during the same period last year, at 519,489 tonnes.

Referring to the global coronavirus pandemic, LEJ said in a statement: “In the midst of this global crisis, Leipzig/Halle is thus again asserting itself as a dynamically growing cargo airport”.

LEJ attributed its cargo growth to DHL’s €655m hub — the firm’s largest — which is located at the airport. LEJ said that plans are currently underway for additions to be made to the infrastructure around the apron that DHL uses.

Leipzig/Halle Airport also said that “volumes handled by other air cargo and logistics companies continued to rise disproportionately”.

For example: “With the coronavirus crisis in full swing in May, freight charter volumes rose by 65.6% year on year. These included cargo flights using passenger aircraft, such as those [operated] by Aeroflot, Nordwind Airlines and Vietnam Airlines”.

Additionally, LEJ attributed its airfreight growth to its 24-hour operating permit for cargo flights, as well as its direct connections to the trans-European motorway and rail network.

Going forward, in response to increasing demand, LEJ intends to invest “hundreds of millions into the cargo segment” including plans to build new aprons, logistics buildings and office blocks in the north and south of airport premises.

Leipzig/Halle is home to PortGround, which has achieved IATA CEIV Pharma certification and is capable of processing time-critical and temperature-sensitive pharmaceutical shipments around the clock. The company also offers e-commerce solutions such as handling, customs clearance and last-mile delivery.

AeroLogic, a joint venture between DHL Express and Lufthansa Cargo, and CargoLogic Germany also have a presence at LEJ.

Altogether, some 60 cargo airlines operate at Leipzig/Halle Airport, covering a route network of more than 200 global destinations.

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