January 11, 2018: During 2017, Brussels Airport handled 535,634 tonnes of cargo, registering growth of 8.3 percent compared to 2016, and the highest volume in the last 10 years.
All segments recorded growth last year, however belly cargo registered a sharp recovery compared to 2016 ( 13.8 percent). Similarly, integrator services also enjoyed a strong growth last year of 9.7percent compared to 2016.
According to reports, the full-cargo segment showed a minor increase ( three percent), thanks to an excellent first quarter and good volumes in November and December.
"This three percent growth follows an increase of almost 15 percent last year compared to 2015. So despite some noise issues we had in Q2 resulting in a few airlines leaving the airport, we are pleased to see our growth picked up again by the end of the year, resulting in an overall increase in this segment," said Steven Polmans, head of cargo and logistics of Brussels Airport.
The export volumes drove this growth with an increase of almost 16 percent. "We have seen a remarkable increase in our volumes to especially the Far East and South America, supported by a strong performance of the European and Belgian economy," said Polmans.
Another impressive figure is the growth in pharmaceuticals at the airport. Last year, Brussels Airport recorded an increase of 18 percent in the transportation of flown pharmaceutical products compared to 2016. This sharp rise confirms the leading position of Brussels Airport as transport specialist for pharmaceutical products.
Looking ahead to 2018, Brussels Airport management is expecting cargo volumes to continue performing strong in all segments.
Later this year, Cathay Pacific is expected to commence A350 operations to Brussels, and only in late 2017, Hainan Airlines started a B787 flight from Shanghai.
Emirates also introduced a second daily B777 flight. DHL Express moved to a new state of the art facility in August 2017, resulting in strong growth figures as of that month.
As far as full cargo is concerned, Amerijet already announced a direct Miami to Brussels rotation, connecting their Central American network with Brussels.
To cope up with this continuous and strong growth, Brussels Airport is all sent to strengthen its cargo team and make considerable investments in its cargo area-BRUcargo.
The airport will further introduce an additional handling agent later this year, after conclusion of the ongoing tender process.