Passenger traffic at DWC surges 84.5 per cent in 2016
Passenger traffic at Dubai World Central (DWC), Dubai's second international hub, witnessed a strong surge in 2016, climbing 84.5 per cent according to the traffic report issued by operator Dubai Airports.
DWC welcomed a total of 850,633 passengers in 2016, up 84.5 per cent compared to 461,063 passengers recorded in 2015. During the fourth quarter, passenger traffic at DWC totalled 248,405 up 39.9 per cent compared to 177,608 passengers recorded during the last three months of 2015. Passenger traffic growth at DWC is mainly driven by flydubai, one of Dubai’s two flagship carriers which operates on average 41 weekly flights to five destinations from DWC, in addition to its operations at Dubai International’s Terminal 2.
Air freight volumes at DWC showed a slight increase during 2016 with 897,998 tonnes, up 0.8 per cent compared to 890,912 tonnes during 2015. Cargo volumes registered strong growth in the fourth quarter with 252,300 tonnes of air freight, up 10.3 per cent compared to 228,770 tonnes recorded in Q4 of 2015.
DWC is currently served by 27 passenger carriers, operating an average of 108 flights weekly to 44 international destinations and is home to 64 scheduled cargo operators that fly to as many as 138 destinations around the world.
DWC handled a total of 38,671 aircraft movements in 2016, a contraction of 5.6 per cent compared to 2015 when the airport recorded 40,947 movements. Aircraft movements during the fourth quarter of 2016 totalled 9,290, down 21 per cent compared to 11,763 recorded in Q4 of 2015.
“After having emerged as one of the top 20 international cargo hubs, DWC is now growing steadily in stature as a passenger hub, and we are pleased with the growth in passenger traffic in 2016. Considering the unique proposition DWC offers to airlines in terms of easy availability of slots, quick turn-around times, quick transit times though the airport for passengers and access to new catchment area – not to forget the expansion project underway that will more than quadruple its capacity to 26 million passengers by next year – we expect the growth trend to continue this year, and beyond,” said Paul Griffiths, CEO of Dubai Airports.
Analyst Saj Ahmad commented: “Dubai World Central's explosive growth in 2016 underscores the potency and allure of the hub, particularly with customers wanting to fly from a less congested airport.
“It also highlights the desire by passengers to continue using flydubai out of both main Dubai Airports, ahead of that airlines eventual permanent shift to DWC that starts towards the end of the year.
“With the second phase of DWC development getting underway later this year, the need for faster expansion will help flydubai unlock it's growth capability - right on track for when it starts inducting it's fuel efficient fleet of new 737 MAXs.”