Welcoming a record 5.5 million passengers in January, Heathrow marked the airport’s best ever start of the year (+1% on January 2015). Larger, fuller, quieter aircraft continued to be a driver for growth in passenger volumes
There was strong passenger growth from emerging markets, including to Mexico which was up 21%, China 16%, Turkey 5.3% and the Middle East which was up 4% as carriers continue to benefit from new aircraft including A380s
January cargo volumes at the UK’s largest port surged 2.9% – notably to Mexico and China which were both up 28% and Turkey up 16%
New routes like Vietnam Airlines’ services to Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City following its switch from Gatwick last year and British Airways’ new flights to Kuala Lumpur boosted freight volumes to East Asia by 26% against January 2014 – underlining the export growth potential that an expanded Heathrow with up to 40 new long-haul connections would deliver for UK plc
The trend looks set to continue as Garuda Indonesia prepares to move its UK operations from Gatwick to Heathrow in March. The UK’s first non-stop services to Jakarta will provide British SMEs with improved direct access to the largest economy in Southeast Asia
Heathrow continues to drive improvements to make the airport the most sustainable hub in the world – reducing emissions by 16% over 5 years and being the only airport in the world signed-up to the Paris Pledge on climate change
Heathrow CEO John Holland-Kaye said:
“With record passenger numbers and strong cargo volumes – it’s been a great start to 2016 for the nation’s largest port, Heathrow.
With expansion, we’ll open up 40 new trading links which will carry more British exports to the fastest growing markets in the world.
We’ll help the Government rebalance our economy and build a better Britain. The Prime Minister can say yes and we will deliver.”