DUBAI International Airport’s Terminal 3 and Concourse 2 are expected to be ready and operational in the third quarter of this year, according to Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, president of Dubai Department of Civil Aviation (DCA) and chairman of Emirates Group.
The $4.1 billion Dubai airport expansion programme, which involves the construction of Terminal 3, Concourse 2 and 3 and is meant exclusively for Emirates Airline, will enable the facility to handle up to 60 million passengers per year by 2010. Additionally, the project will greatly increase the airport’s capacity to handle the new A380 super-jumbo with 24 dedicated gates, while its cargo handling facilities would also expand manifold.
“The new concourses and terminal will not only expand our capacity to handle more traffic, they will also add a new benchmark for the quality of service and variety of facilities an airport provides to passengers,” he said.
Annual passenger throughput at Dubai airport reached 28,788,726 – a growth of 16.17 per cent. The airport had handled some 24.78 million passengers in 2005. Passenger throughput is expected to cross 33 million this year.
The growth rate in passenger throughput registered in 2006 means that for the sixth consecutive year, the airport has continued to grow well over an average of 15 per cent annually.
A total of 113 scheduled airlines and 25 frequent charter airlines are operating through the airport, connecting to over 194 destinations. December was the busiest month for the airport in 2006 with 2.731 million passengers passing through, while just over 2.5 million and 2.4 million passengers were recorded in July and September respectively.
Cargo movement continued its upward trend in 2006 with Dubai Cargo Village registering a growth of 5.85 per cent over 2005. The facility handled a total of 1,410,963 tonnes of cargo in 2006 as compared to 1,333,014 tonnes in 2005.
For 2006, aircraft movement at Dubai International Airport witnessed a healthy growth of 9.25 per cent over 2005. The airport handled a total of 237,258 flights, as against 217,165 flights in 2005.
“Dubai International Airport has been growing at an average of 15 per cent annually since 2000, and we expect the growth rate to pick up pace and climb further up over the coming years,” said Sheikh Ahmed.
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