DUBAI: Dubai World Central (DWC) which is listed among the world’s top 20 international freight hubs is now gaining ground in the region as a popular airport for passengers with traffic surging 161 per cent in the third quarter, according to a report issued by operator Dubai Airports today.
DWC welcomed 191,950 passengers during Q3, a sharp increase of 161 per cent compared to 73,466 passengers recorded during the corresponding period in 2015. The year to date traffic totalled 602,228 passengers, up 112 per cent compared to 283,455 recorded during the first nine months in 2015. Passenger traffic at DWC is mainly driven by flydubai, one of Dubai’s two flagship carriers which in addition to its operations at Dubai International’s Terminal 2, operates 35 weekly flights to five destinations from DWC. Qatar Airways and Wizz Air are the two other major carriers carrying out scheduled passenger operations from DWC.
A total of 3 passenger carriers operate an average of 140 flights weekly to 10 international destinations from DWC, which is also home to 32 scheduled cargo operators that connect the airport to as many as 107 destinations around the world.
During the third quarter DWC handled 215,556 tonnes of freight compared to 219,131 tonnes handled during the corresponding period in 2015, down 1.6 per cent. The year to date cargo as at the end of September reached 645,698 tonnes, a contraction of 2.5 per cent compared to 662,143 tonnes recorded during the first nine months of 2015.
Aircraft movements in the third quarter totalled 8,679 compared to 9,137 movements during the same period last year, a decrease of 5 per cent. Year to date aircraft movements in September reached 28,877 down 3.8 per cent from 30,003 movements recorded in the first nine months of 2015.
Commenting on the results, Paul Griffiths, CEO of Dubai Airports, said, “We are very happy with the way passenger traffic has been growing at DWC. But this is only the beginning. By the end of next year the airport will see tremendous growth as it becomes the new home for flydubai. The project to expand the annual capacity of the passenger terminal at DWC from 5 million to 26 million passengers in underway and on track to be completed by the third quarter of 2017.”