Dubai airports traffic to hit 200 million in 2030

Published by Trade Arabia 12 March 2015

The total number of passengers passing through Dubai airports is expected to cross 200 million by 2030, according to the revised projections of Dubai Airports, the operator of Dubai International and Al Maktoum International in Dubai World Central.

Al Maktoum Airport

Al Maktoum Airport

This growth is now pushing Dubai Airports to expand its infrastructure to accommodate the numbers, said Paul Griffiths, chief executive officer of Dubai Airports, speaking at the Future of Border International Conference in Dubai today.

Dubai International is currently the world’s number one airport for international passengers and the sixth busiest.

Al Maktoum International Airport in Dubai World Central (DWC), which presently has five to seven million passengers capacity, saw 845,046 passengers passing through its gates in its first full year of operations in 2014.

As part of future development plans, Dubai Airports plans to expand its infrastructure with the first phase of the $32 billion DWC expansion to be completed over the next six to eight years.  This will enable the facility to accommodate 120 million passengers on completion and will see a further passenger capacity of 220 million post the completion of its second phase.

Moreover, Dubai International will increase its capacity to 100 million passengers following a $7.8 billion investment in infrastructure development.

Giving details of Dubai airport operations, Griffiths said as many as 192,000 people come through the airport every day on 980 flights.  “Ten years ago, no one would have believed that Dubai, then the 44th largest international airport in the world, would progress up the ranks so fast that in 2014 it would claim the number one spot,” he said.

“Again we are delivering more infrastructure.  The final piece of hitherto undeveloped infrastructure space within the airport is nearing completion.  This year, we will open Concourse D, home to the airport’s overseas airline partners.  The facility with 17 additional gates will be able to handle 15 million passengers and will be linked to Terminal 1 via Automated People Mover (APM).

He stated: “Of course we need to keep pushing the upper limits of Dubai International capacity. Parallel developments of additional remote stands and airspace efficiency will help push out as far as possible the point at which it becomes ex-growth.  Our US$7.8 billion investment will lead to an ultimate capacity of 100 million.  That takes into account the increased passenger/flight ratio driven by Emirates’ expanding fleet of A380s.  But that, I’m afraid, is that entire airfield will handle.  So again, growth is pushing us to expand.”

Griffiths observed: “There is a clear and determined vision, unchanged for over 50 years, to create an aviation enterprise with the world’s greatest airports, hosting the world’s greatest airlines, in the world’s greatest city.”