This year’s Air Cargo Forum (ACF) which starts today (Oct 16) in Toronto is seen by Budapest, Duesseldorf and Hamburg Airports as being the ideal venue for the three airports to further promote their joint cargo operations.
The above is the slogan that BUD, DUS and HAM are using to signal their joint effort to showcase their plans for the future which they first made known a year or so ago. All three will be sharing a booth at the ACF to signal their combined planning.
In the meantime, they have come a few steps further in their efforts to signal to the airlines and the general handling scene that secondary airports such as theirs can and should play a more important role as cargo airports for the future.
They state that they will use the three days in Toronto to ‘showcase investment in new facilities and cost-effective, flexible cargo solutions.’
What have all three achieved so far?
The airport is really moving ahead fast in establishing itself as a true cargo hub. Last month construction started on their new 20,000 sq. m. Cargo City which is part of the airport’s €160 million development programme named BUD2020.
BUD has seen rising cargo volumes during the past couple of years and they say that cargo volumes at the airport have risen by almost 40% between 2015 and 2017. A new express freight facility with 16,000 sq. m. of space was opened last year as a first step in gearing up for the increased e-commerce handling demand.
A cargo friendly airport which has developed itself as a leading Central European cargo hub with plans to expand further.
Gerton Hulsman, DUS Cargo’s Managing Director has put a lot of effort during the past years to promote and push DUS as a cargo hub in the German Rhineland area.
In the meantime, the airport is capable of handling up to 200,000 tons per annum in their almost 13,000 sqm large warehouse and has invested in a 450 sq. m. state-of-the-art cool storage facility for perishables and pharmaceuticals. Two new customized temperature controlled dollies are in the planning for moving temperature-sensitive goods directly to and from the aircraft to the Cool Centre. They are also the first German airport which was CEIV certified.
DUS Airport has a huge catchment area due to its location right in the middle of the German industrial production scene.
The north German airport management has also not been stingy in putting cash up front for cargo investment. The new Hamburg Airport Cargo Centre (HACC) has cost the owners Hamburg City and Avialliance around €50 million so far.
Hamburg was previously known as being a terrible airport for cargo handlers, too little space, out-of-date systems, poor warehouse infrastructure and so on. This has changed with the new HACC. Operation processes have been updated and refined, there is a direct access to the airport apron for speedier transport to and from the aircraft and the airport has introduced a so called ‘multi-user concept’ which is they say geared towards tailored logistics solutions. They now offer a total of 150,000 tons of air cargo handling capacity.
Second-tier airports working together
Will that work?
It seems so as all three are not viewing themselves as being direct competitors, but more so as users of combined synergies. They see their cargo future, in which they have all invested heavily, as being locations which with their new and expanded set-ups can process cargo more swiftly and where they think they can be more customer focused than their larger brothers in the area.
John Mc Donagh