Strikes negatively impact FRA’s passenger volume – Most of Fraport’s Group airports worldwide report traffic growth
In November 2019, Frankfurt Airport (FRA) welcomed almost 5.1 million passengers – representing a 3.4 percent decrease compared to the same month last year. The thinned-out winter flight schedule and the two-day strike by Lufthansa cabin staff had a negative impact on passenger numbers. Without the strike effect, FRA’s passenger traffic would have declined only slightly by 1.1 percent year-on-year. Intercontinental traffic to and from Frankfurt continued to grow robustly by 2.1 percent. In contrast, European traffic fell markedly by 6.5 percent due to airline bankruptcies and other factors. Aircraft movements shrank by 5.8 percent to 38,790 takeoffs and landings. Accumulated maximum takeoff weights (MTOWs) also contracted by 4.0 percent to around 2.4 million metric tons. Reflecting the ongoing slowdown of the global economy, cargo throughput (comprising airfreight and airmail) dropped by 5.0 percent to 186,670 metric tons.
Fraport’s executive board chairman, Dr. Stefan Schulte, commented: “Following solid traffic growth this year so far, we experienced a noticeable decline in November, primarily due to strikes. As a result, we expect full-year passenger traffic at Frankfurt to grow at a slightly slower pace than our previous forecast of about two to three percent. Despite slightly slower traffic growth, we are maintaining our financial outlook for the full year 2019 – backed by the positive financial performance achieved to date in Frankfurt and with our international business.”
Across the Group, the airports in Fraport’s international portfolio largely performed well in November 2019. Affected by the bankruptcy of home-carrier Adria Airways and other factors, Slovenia’s Ljubljana Airport (LJU) reported a 27.0 percent decline in traffic to 85,787 passengers. Also the two Brazilian airports of Fortaleza (FOR) and Porto Alegre (POA) saw combined traffic slip by 2.2 percent to just over 1.3 million passengers. This was primarily due to the bankruptcy of Avianca Brasil and to Azul airlines reducing its flight offerings. Peru’s Lima Airport (LIM) recorded a 6.9 percent jump in traffic to some 1.9 million passengers.
With 727,043 passengers overall, Fraport’s 14 Greek regional airports maintained last year’s level (up 0.1 percent). Bulgaria’s Varna (VAR) and Burgas (BOJ) airports registered a total of 83,764 passengers – growing by 22.7 percent, albeit on the basis of a low traffic November month in the previous year.
Antalya Airport (AYT) in Turkey welcomed almost 1.4 million passengers, representing a gain of 11.8 percent year-on-year. Traffic at St. Petersburg’s Pulkovo Airport (LED) in Russia registered a 6.8 percent increase to about 1.4 million passengers. At Xi’an Airport (XIY) in China, traffic climbed 4.9 percent to nearly 3.8 million passengers.