Air cargo continues to boom at Budapest Airport; the aerodrome handled 86 798 tons of air cargo during the first six months of 2021, which is the strongest half-year ever in its history. Thanks to the record half-year, cargo volume projected over 12 months also jumped to unprecedented heights; during the year from June to June, the Cargo City handled 157 402 tons of goods, whereby the airport has crossed the dream threshold of 150 000 tons. Amongst other factors, the airport’s excellent cargo infrastructure, the further strengthening of e-commerce and the fact that the Alibaba Group chose Budapest as its Central and Eastern European aerial logistics hub in April 2021 all contributed to the upturn in cargo traffic.
According to bud.hu, cargo traffic records are being broken on a monthly basis at Ferenc Liszt International Airport.
The cargo volume handled by the BUD Cargo City is continuously increasing, both compared to 2020 and 2019.
The airport handled 15 233 tons of air cargo in June 2021, which constitutes 52.6% growth from the same month of 2020 and 41.2% compared to the same period in 2019. Thanks to consecutive months of outstanding cargo figures, volumes reached an unprecedented level during the first half of this year as well; 86 798 tons of cargo passed through Budapest Airport from January to June 2021, which is 35.9% more than during the first six months of last year. The dynamic growth in cargo not only produced a record half-year, but also a record 12 months; during the period from June 2020 to July 2021, the airport crossed the dream threshold of 150 000 tons, taking another huge step towards becoming the air cargo hub for the region.
Chris Dinsdale, the CEO of Budapest Airport Zrt. emphasized in connection with the results:
“This is the first time in its history that Ferenc Liszt International Airport has crossed the threshold of 150 000 tons. Performance over the past 12 months confirms our belief that the cargo business is of key importance for us, and the Cargo City, handed over last year, is indeed able to energize and encourage freight forwarders to use Budapest Airport for air freight, which is a very attractive solution for the collection and distribution of air cargo.” He added: “At the same time, our many years of effort for cargo have paid off, and we are reaping the rewards of the conscious work that our colleagues and the cargo community have put in together. However, cargo is not only about the airport, it is also about the national economy as a whole, because, besides its ability to create jobs, stimulate investment and support local businesses, it provides a safe and stable transport option for all businesses, on which companies who choose air freight can build a calculable future.”
Budapest Airport’s air cargo activities create approximately 1800 jobs directly at the airport and an additional 10 000 via the related ecosystem. Amongst airports within the East-Central European region, the increase in Budapest Airport’s cargo traffic has consistently been in the top league for the last 2 years, and its strategic role is increasingly unquestionable, which is further strengthened by the outstanding cargo traffic over the past months between China and Hungary.
József Kossuth, head of cargo for Budapest Airport highlighted:
“We consider it one of our greatest successes this year that the Alibaba Group, one of the largest e-commerce businesses in China and its logistics partner, Cainiao, chose Budapest Airport as their regional hub.” He added: “We are delighted and proud that Alibaba has chosen us, which is a huge achievement with great growth potential and further business opportunities, not only for the airport but for the Hungarian logistics industry as well. The company’s presence in Budapest already means the arrival of approximately 2.5 million items per month currently by air, which will increase strongly over the coming months.”
Several factors have had a positive impact on the outstanding recent cargo volumes. Firstly, Budapest Airport’s new air cargo logistics base provides an important basis for growth; the first phase of the BUD Cargo City, handed over one-and-a-half years ago, ensures an efficient, optimal, world-class solution for the dynamically increasing air freight, with 32 000 square meters of new building space and new aircraft stands. Secondly, another definitive factor is the cargo-friendly environment at the airport, the work of the cargo community surrounding air freight, where the airport works with the airlines, ground handling companies, authorities and cargo partners to create a fast and precise handling and a high-quality logistics service environment. In addition to this, e-commerce is growing steadily and dynamically in the region, for which air freight can offer the fastest and most efficient solutions.