Last Updated on Wednesday, 11 September, 2019 at 12:10 pm by Lee Smallwood Cassar
Malta Airport’s passenger traffic was up by year-on-year 13.2% to 6,808,177 in 2018, breaking a record, according to a press statement issued by the airport. Forecasting an estimated 5.8% growth for 2019, Malta Airport expects to see 7.2+ million passengers by the end of the year.
In the past three years only, Malta International Airport (MIA) in Luqa saw a remarkable 47% increase. In 2018, the most popular destinations included the UK, Italy, Germany, France and Spain. Following the introduction of better connections with these countries, the airport’s top five markets registered varying degrees of growth over 2017, ranging from 2% to 37.8%, the press statement underlines.
“While our 100-destination summer schedule was an important contributing factor to these numbers, it is encouraging to see that, for the fifth consecutive year, our shoulder and winter months have outpaced the peak summer months in terms of growth,” says Alan Borg, CEO of MIA.
Mr Borg noted that nine airlines had either extended routes originally introduced in summer into the present winter season or else increased flight frequencies on specific routes. Looking ahead to summer, Mr Borg noted that 18 new developments had been announced, including flights to Amman and the launch of daily operations to Doha by newcomer Qatar Airways.
“The Government of Malta, through the Ministry for Tourism and the Malta Tourism Authority, works collaboratively with Malta International Airport on a strategy of growth and route network expansion. By means of the significant investment programme which is being rolled out, Malta will continue to improve airline connectivity across neighbouring and strategically important areas,” says Minister for Tourism Konrad Mizzi, according to the press statement by MIA.
The airport foresees further development in 2019, with over €20m earmarked for investment.