Dubai clocks record passenger growth.
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Dubai International Airport (DIA) had handled a record 18.46 million passengers in the first half of 2008, registering a growth of 13.80 per cent over the first half of 2007.
The airport saw an average of three million passengers pass through per month throughout the first half of this year, making it the busiest period in the airportCOs history.
The record growth in the first half this year means that, as in the previous few years, Dubai International will exceed the projected annual figure this year too.
Some 40 million passengers are expected to use the airport in 2008, said an DIA official.
Dubai International was the worldCOs fastest growing airport in 2007 in terms of international passenger throughput, with a growth of 19.31 per cent or 34.34 million passengers.
During the period under review, March was the busiest month for the airport with 3.25 million passengers, while February recorded the highest growth rate at 18.80 per cent.
Monthly passenger throughput crossed the three million mark throughout the first half except in February when, at 2.97 million, the figure was just shy of the record mark. The average passenger movement per day at Dubai International has increased to nearly 100,000.
Cargo also showed robust growth at Dubai International with Dubai Cargo Village handling 831,978 tonnes of freight Co up 10.70 per cent over first half of 2007.
June was the busiest month for DCV with 147,012 tonnes of freight, while April registered the highest growth at 13.44 per cent.
The overall growth during the first half this year resulted in increased aircraft movement at Dubai International, with an increase of 5.94 per cent.
The airport handled a total of 135,144 aircraft movements (both inbound and outbound) between January and June this year as against 127,568 in the first half last year.
The busiest period for the airport in terms of aircraft movement was in March with over 24,143 aircraft. On an average, there are 715 aircraft movements per day at Dubai International.
Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, president of Dubai Civil Aviation Authority (DCAA) and chairman of Dubai Airports, said the airport was the main gateway to the city of Dubai, which is recognised as a global commerce and tourism hub.
'The growth of the city and that of the airport are entwined in a directly proportional relationship.'
He pointed out that Dubai InternationalCOs growth reflects the robust economy of Dubai and its emergence as the regional and increasingly global centre for trade, travel and tourism.
Paul Griffiths, CEO, Dubai Airports, said, C[pounds sterling]Although itCOs great news, thereCOs no time to celebrate. We are all working to maintain customer service levels at Dubai International during the peak summer travel season, while also testing and preparing the new terminal and airside facility for opening later this year.C[yen]
'Once Terminal 3 and its associated airside facility are open our capacity will get the much needed boost to handle the increasing passenger throughput at Dubai International.C[yen]
Mohammed Ahli, director general of Dubai Civil Aviation Authority, and CEO, Air Traffic Services (ATS), attributed Dubai InternationalCOs sustained growth for over half a decade to the cityCOs geographical location.- TradeArabia News Service
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